A reader alerted me to this:
St. Anthony’s stolen religious relic sparks searches
By Mike Krumboltz
A 780-year-old treasure honoring St. Anthony of Padua has been stolen from a Southern California Catholic church.
The relic, which is normally kept under lock and key, was brought out by the Rev. Jose Magana because he thought it might help his parishioners regain their faith during the difficult economic climate. In a bit of bitter irony, St. Anthony is known as the patron saint of lost things. Following news of the theft, web searches on “st. anthony stolen” and “who was st. anthony” both surged.
The relic was taken at some point on Monday, “the feast day of the church’s namesake.” According to a buzzy article from the AP, the relic was likely stolen at some point between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. When the parishioners realized the relic had been taken, there was an audible gasp in the church.
A police lieutenant said “the relic is housed in a 16-inch reliquary case with angel-shaped handles made of gold and silver on either side.” The reverend called the relic invaluable,” according to the AP.
Could I ask a prayer from the readership for the recovery of this relic?
UPDATE 17 June:
I thank a reader for alerting me to the news item at Catholic Culture:
Police in Long Beach, California, have arrested Maria Solis, 41, in conjunction with the theft of a relic of St. Anthony of Padua from a parish on June 13. The relic was discovered undamaged in her living room and has been returned to the parish; the suspect is not a parishioner.
“St. Anthony is the patron saint of travelers and lost things, but today he’s also the honorary saint of the Long Beach Police Department,” said Father Jose Magana, pastor of St. Anthony’s Parish.
I wasn’t aware that police department’s have patron saints, but it is a very good idea.
Let there be sung Non nobis and Te Deum.