Skip to main content

Recent Minnesota 'Baby Jesus' thefts seem to be part of a national trend

Manger thefts are apparently on the rise, and no one's really sure why.

Did you hear about the Baby Jesus that was stolen from a Nativity scene in St. Cloud recently? 

Well, turns out it wasn't an isolated incident. In fact, it's been happening all over the country.

"Such manger larceny, in glaring violation of the Eighth Commandment, is also part of a sad national trend," reports the New York Times, which says Jesus thieves have hit Nativity scenes in Tennessee, West Virginia, Minnesota, Wisconsin and "plenty of other places" recently.   

Indeed, you know a phenomenon like this is officially a "thing" when it has its own Wikipedia page, which Baby Jesus theft most certainly does.

What's behind the apparent rise in manger-related crimes is not clear, but the Times says there are multiple theories floating around – including one that the thefts signify "an erosion of faith." 

Whatever the cause, Minnesota seems to have had more than its fair share of missing babies Jesus, with at least three such thefts making the news this month. 

There's the aforementioned St. Cloud case, where thieves snatched the Jesus doll from the Nativity scene at U.S. Bank on West St. Germain Street, City Pages notes, adding that the doll was a World War II-era antique owned by the Stearns County History Museum.

As of this writing, the infant savior has not been heard from, and the same goes for the one stolen from a Catholic church in Pine River this past week. 

A Baby Jesus was also swiped from a Nativity set outside the Cedar Rose Inn, a bed & breakfast in Alexandria, Minnesota.

In that case, the Echo Press reported, the couple that owns the B&B have not filed a report with police, and "aren't even asking for the return of the baby Jesus."

Instead, the pair wrote a "good-hearted message" to the Echo Press about the incident, saying that "evidently the person/persons responsible needs Jesus in their lives every day, as do all Christians."

Something tells us that Baby Jesus would agree, but we don't condone theft, of course.

Next Up

Arianna Vos

Victim of wrong-way driver crash ID'd as Hutchinson 19-year-old

Three women, ages 19, 20 and 20, were in the vehicle struck by a wrong-way driver early Sunday morning.

Julissa Thaler

Eli Hart killing: Police investigating multiple crime scenes

An announcement Tuesday confirmed potential crime scenes in Mound and Minnetrista.

SEIU Healthcare Minnesota strike.

Twin Cities mental health workers gather for 1-day strike

More than 400 mental health workers are participating in the unionized strike on Tuesday.

Bloomington Fire

HAZMAT team at Bloomington hotel following chemical spill in pool

The fire department said two hotel employees are being evaluated by paramedics.

Screen Shot 2022-03-24 at 9.21.32 AM

Big Brothers Big Sisters Twin Cities gets $6M of Mackenzie Scott donation

The donation is the largest the organization has ever seen from a single individual.

Hennepin Avenue S.

Minneapolis accused of backtracking on 24/7 bus lanes for Hennepin Ave.

The Minneapolis City Council is set to vote on Thursday.

Pexels - face mask covid holding

Duluth brings back masking in city buildings amid COVID surge

Duluth, in one of the state's current COVID hotspots, has brought back a mask requirement in city buildings.

covid

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Tuesday, May 24

Minnesota has now surpassed 12,600 COVID deaths.

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

Violent Offender Task Force in standoff with suspect in St. Cloud

Police announced the standoff at 10:14 a.m. Tuesday.

Screen Shot 2022-03-26 at 11.08.59 AM

Cause of fire that destroyed Waterville bar remains unknown

The fire destroyed the Funky Munky Bar and damaged several other properties.

dicks house of sport Minnetonka_48

Pro athletes to attend opening of Minnetonka Dick's Sporting Goods

The grand opening is set for June 3, with special guests appearing June 3-5.

Related

plymouth police baby

Plymouth parents welcome new baby... in their driveway

The birth was quite the surprise for a couple of local cops on Friday.

Screen Shot 2019-06-30 at 9.51.50 AM

Minnesota Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan is getting married

Her boyfriend popped the question this past week. She said yes.

Unopened Sweet Jesus store at Mall of America

The mystery of that unopened 'Sweet Jesus' store at Mall of America

The ice cream shop has been "Coming Soon" for years. Is there hope for it?

Clown mask.

Clown sightings raise concerns among Annandale residents

Stay away from sewer grates if you're in the area.

Screen Shot 2020-12-25 at 3.03.35 PM

Bentleyville is back after closing due to 'extensive' wind damage

Brutally cold temps also kept the attraction out of commission.