CNA Staff, Dec 4, 2020 / 12:01 pm America/Denver (CNA).
The Catholic leaders of the Holy Land are demanding an investigation into an attempted arson attack at a basilica located near the Garden of Gethsemane.
The Basilica of the Agony, located on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem next to the Garden of Gethsemane, is also known as the Church of All Nations. It houses a section of rock where Christ prayed the night before his crucifixion.
Israeli police on Dec. 4 said they had arrested a 49-year-old Jewish man who "poured flammable liquid inside the church.” The fire damaged a Byzantine mosaic, but did not spread to the church’s structure.
The Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries, which is composed of the leaders of the Holy Land’s Latin and Eastern Catholic Churches, shared pictures in a Dec. 4 joint statement of several pews blackened by smoke.
“As we thank God that the fire was quickly extinguished, we thank the police for their swift action and arrest of the suspect. We also demand the police to seriously investigate this arson attack, especially since it seems that it is racially motivated,” the ordinaries said.