Statue of Virgin Mary Destroyed by Refugees

In January 2016 a man was kneeling and praying in front of a statute of Mother Mary with a picture of a family member in a chapel of St. Barnabas in Perugia, Italy. At that peaceful moment of contemplative prayer he did not expect what was going to happen next.

Five Muslim immigrants ripped the photograph from his hand. They then broke the statute of Virgin Mary into pieces and urinated on it.

Don Scarda, pastor of St Barnabas later confirmed that five men are responsible for the damage and desecration. But, despite informing the police immediately the refugees fled. Unfortunately, the police was not able to identify them.

Monsignor Paolo Giulietti, the auxiliary bishop of Città della Pieve, near Perugia said that:

For Islam, the figure of Mary is very important: she is the mother of the Prophet Jesus conceived in virginity, and the Blessed Virgin is the most holy woman.  Muslims pray at the Marian shrines in the Middle East. We cannot see in this act of vandalism—which as I said is wrong in every way—an episode of religious hatred. It is important not to feed mutual suspicion, especially at this time.

But, it is not relevant whether it was religiously motivated or not. The fact remains that people responsible for this act should be penalized for it.

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