Thieves roll tabernacle worth $15K out of church in St. Paul

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A vessel worth $15,000 has been stolen from a church in St.Paul, and police have issued an appeal for help finding it.

A tabernacle weighing 50 pounds was discovered to have been stolen from the St. Pascal Baylon Catholic Church Friday morning, KSTP reports, with surveillance video showing three men rolling the object along the sidewalk outside the church on the 1700 block of Conway Street.

"I literally felt sick to my stomach," the Rev. Michael Byron told the TV station, describing the moment he discovered the solid bronze vessel that had been in his church for 15 years was missing.

The Pioneer Press reports that the tabernacle is 2-feet tall, a foot-and-a-half wide, and is engraved with two angels facing a cross. It's used to hold the Eucharist outside of Mass and was kept in an alcove behind the altar.

Byron told the newspaper it would not have been immediately obvious to someone walking in, saying: "My sense is this was the one thing they wanted."

"It's really torn the heart out of this community," he added.

Anyone with information about the tabernacle should call Sgt. Jason Brubaker on 651-266-5616.

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