CNA Staff, Jul 15, 2020 / 09:40 am America/Denver (CNA).
A statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary was attacked this weekend at a parish in Chattanooga, Tennessee, the third reported incident against a statue of Mary occuring in the same weekend.
“What a strange time [we live in],” Bishop Richard Stika of Knoxville tweeted on July 13. “Over the weekend, an outdoor statue of the Blessed Mother was beheaded at St. Stephen Parish in Chattanooga.”
On the morning of Saturday, July 11, Fr. Manuel Perez, pastor of St. Stephen Catholic Church in Chattanooga, was walking the church grounds and preparing for Mass when he noticed that the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary had been knocked over. Upon further inspection, he noticed the head of the statue was nowhere to be found, although the body and pedestal of the statue remained.
“Fr. Perez said that he looked around the church grounds to see if he could find a missing head and he couldn't locate it,” Jim Wogan, director of communications for the Diocese of Knoxville, told CNA.
The statue is about five feet tall and estimated to be worth about $2,000. There was no other damage to the church, and Wogan said that the statute was partly shielded by shrubbery.