Fr Michael Router.
“I don’t want to get to the situation where we are closing the church during the day.”
So said the parish priest in Bailieborough this week. Fr Michael Routers comments follow a robbery at St Anne’s Church last Saturday afternoon – the second time in as many months that the church was targeted by callous thieves.
Investigating gardaí are reviewing a CCTV image of a man and are appealing for information in relation to the theft.
A robber targeted one of the candlelabras in St Anne’s sometime between 4:15-6pm last Saturday. They made off with the contents of the cash box.
The candelabra, which was beside St Anthony and St Teresa, is about five years old. It was found dumped down an incline at the rear of the church. The glass candle holders were damaged as it was bashed around in the raid.
Fr Router revealed said there was also an incident two weeks before Christmas when an instrument and some PA system items that were used in a nativity plays were stolen. Three windows were smashed in the church on that occasion to gain entry. Those items were later recovered.
Prior to that, ceramic pots were stolen from the graveyard last summer and were subsequently advertised on an online site.
Fr Router says that as part of forthcoming renovations at the church the intention now is to extend and install a more elaborate camera (CCTV) system.
Fr Router said he was preparing for a Confirmation mass on Saturday evening. “The likes of this incident is distracting, disheartening and takes up a lot of time. A lot of people around the town are very annoyed about it,” he said.
He pointed out that the money that was taken had been put in as petitions by people visiting the church and lighting candles.
Fr Router said it would be sad if the Church in Bailieborough had to be shut during the day.