Suspect destroys tabernacle, church property in Norwood Catholic church break-in

The incident is thought to have happened in late January, church officials said.

Police in Norwood are continuing to investigate an incident from last month when someone allegedly broke into a Catholic church’s tabernacle and destroyed it.

A few weeks ago, Father Anthony Medairos, one of St. Catherine of Siena Parish’s vicars, said that sometime between the morning and evening mass services on Jan. 27, someone used what is believed to be a screwdriver to break into a cabinet in the church’s sacristy — a room where items for services are kept — but left the vessels kept in there.

“For some reason they didn’t find what they wanted there,” Medairos said.

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The suspect, Medairos said, is believed to have used the same screwdriver on the tabernacle in the chapel, which is locked and is where a Catholic church houses the eucharist, the body and blood of Christ after it’s been consecrated by a priest.

The eucharist was not disturbed, but the wooden tabernacle will need to be replaced, according to Medairos. He said it’s likely the suspect didn’t know what it was, and perhaps they were looking for money.

Police told Boston 25 News they’re asking for the public’s help, and anyone with information is asked to call Det. Paul Ryan at 781-440-5196. 

A person of interest was captured on surveillance footage, according to Medairos.

For now, Medairos said the eucharist is being kept in the main tabernacle, which is made of marble. But it’s much more of a hassle for those attempting to pick up communion for a sick parishioner — they now have to go pick up a key.

The church is also keeping the sacristy locked, which also poses an inconvenience, Medairos said. One has to access the sacristy to be able to use the restrooms.

For someone in need, Medairos said the church would’ve gladly helped them if they had asked.

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“They could’ve come to the house, and we could’ve helped them with food or lodging for the night,” he said.

He believes the act was “more out of ignorance” than out of hatred.