Baby Jesus statue stolen from Sunbury church

St. Monica.jpg

SUNBURY, NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY (WOLF) -- Police in Sunbury searching for the person who stole a baby Jesus statue from a manger outside of a local church.

Over the weekend, the Pastor of St. Monica Catholic Church here on Market Street says he noticed the statue was missing.

Now, he's hoping whoever took it will return it and explain why they stole it in the first place.

During Christmastime, this display box outside of St. Monica Catholic Church in Sunbury features statues depicting a nativity scene.

A common sight outside most churches during the holiday season.

St. Monica’s keep the statues up until the epiphany in early January, but this past Saturday Father Fred Wangwe says something was missing.

“Between 1 and 2. I usually pass around here to make sure everything is secure and I did realize that the image of Jesus was missing,” Father Wangwe said.

He says he checked with his colleagues to make sure they hadn’t moved the statue from its manger before calling police, who are now conducting an investigation.

Father Wangwe says the church primarily just wants the statue back, but personally, he wants to know the thief’s motive.

“I’m disappointed, but first of all I want to know the motive – if it was someone who was just passing around and so for whatever decided to pick Jesus. I don’t know. So I don’t know really how to feel. Maybe somebody didn’t know what they were doing, so that’s why I’m interested in the investigation,” Father Wangwe.

The baby Jesus statue and the others included in the nativity scene have been used by the church since it was established back in 1949.

Church members say its put out each year for not only the congregation, but also the public to enjoy and are pleading with whoever took it to do the right thing.

“In taking that particular statue, that takes the main reason and the main point of the Christmas season away. And so, you don’t need the other figures if Jesus is not there,” Pastoral Associate Linda Walborn said.

Sunbury Police say the investigation is still ongoing, but did not say if they've discovered any leads.

Anyone with information should call police headquarters.

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