Sacred statue disappears from Catholic church; congregation prays for its return

Father Jimmy Drennan hopes the statue of the Holy Family is returned soon

SAN ANTONIO – The congregation of St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church is praying for the return of a sacred statue they believe was stolen last week.

Father Jimmy Drennan, pastor of the church located southeast of downtown said they noticed the statue missing Thursday, which puts the alleged theft sometime Wednesday night.

The statue is of Jesus, Mary and Joseph and was given to the church four decades ago by Jack and Theresa Fohn, who have since passed away.

“When I back my truck in, I always look across the parking lot, I say a prayer to the Holy Family, and on Thursday right before mass, it was gone,” Drennan said.

Drennan said the church has experienced crime before but nothing like this.

“It kind of hit a high point when the statue of the Holy Family, which has been here for 40 years in front of our activity center, was removed overnight and has just disappeared,” he said.

With the statue weighing at least 300 pounds and sitting high up on a concrete foundation, Drennan believes multiple people are responsible.

“I imagine it took a team effort for them to do this,” he said. “We are praying that they encourage each other to do the right thing. We are thinking it may be in an alley way, someone may have stolen it as a prank and dropped it some place.”

Drennan said the absence of the statue is a tragedy for everyone.

“It represents a great deal to the community,” Drennan said. “The image of the Holy Family represents the unity of the community as one family.”

He said the congregation does forgive the people responsible for the theft.

“We must first pray for those who have stolen the statue, and then do whatever we can to have it returned,” Drennan said. “We want them to know our doors are always open and that they are a part of this community. We love them and we just want the statue back.”

Anyone with information on the statue’s whereabouts is urged to call the San Antonio Police Department.

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Japhanie Gray joined 10 News as an anchor in March 2022.

Before starting at KSAT in August 2011, Ken was a news photographer at KENS. Before that he was a news photographer at KVDA TV in San Antonio. Ken graduated from San Antonio College with an associate's degree in Radio, TV and Film. Ken has won a Sun Coast Emmy and four Lone Star Emmys. Ken has been in the TV industry since 1994.