St. Pascal Baylon replaces stolen tabernacle

| January 5, 2016 | 1 Comment

St. Pascal Baylon in St. Paul recently replaced a bronze tabernacle stolen from the church Sept. 4. The new one is a replica of the stolen tabernacle and was made by Excelsis, a U.S. manufacturer of church goods. It arrived at the parish Dec. 23 and was blessed at Masses Jan. 2 and 3.

“It feels like church is whole again,” said Father Michael Byron, St. Pascal’s pastor. “Every day that we had Mass, we were looking at a vacant space. There was no place of beauty with which to repose the Blessed Sacrament. We’re never going to recover the loss, and there’s still a great deal of sadness about that. But it’s also an opportunity to remember the people of God are still intact, and the church can survive even this. That’s consoling.”

Pieces of the tabernacle were recovered, according to St. Paul police, but not the consecrated hosts. The estimated value of the 250-pound tabernacle was $18,000. The new one, also bronze, cost $16,500, with all but the $1,000 deductible covered by insurance. Private donations, including one from a pastor in California, covered the deductible. Father Byron noted that religious good retailer St. Patrick’s Guild in St. Paul paid for the shipping.

“I was able to announce it at Christmas Eve Masses that it had returned, and there was spontaneous applause,” Father Byron said. “It means an awful lot to the people here.”

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