Icons stolen from two Ukrainian churches

Ploske and Ternovoe, Ukraine, November 9, 2018

Photo: spzh.news Photo: spzh.news

Two more churches of the canonical Orthodox Church were robbed in the past few days. Three ancient icons, money, and jewelry were stolen from one church and nine icons from the other.

OrthoChristian previously reported that three ancient icons and an altar cross were also stolen from a church in Ukrainka in the Rivne Province on November 2.

Photo: spzh.news Photo: spzh.news
Attackers cut through the window lattice and broke in through the window of the Holy Protection Church in village of Ploske in the Kiev Province on the night of November 5 to 6, reports a correspondent of the Union of Orthodox Journalists.

The unknown suspects made off with three ancient icons, monetary donations from two safes, and valuable jewelry from a wonderworking icon of the Mother of God left by grateful parishioners.

Rector Archpriest Nikolai Sidorenko believes the icons were specifically chosen—all being no less than 100 years later. The frames from the icons were left in the church.

“Thank God they didn’t touch the altar,” the priest said. “The Gospel is there, which is 200 years old.”

Police were called to the scene, but the investigation has not yet led to any results. “There’s something wrong here,” Fr. Nikolai said. “Nobody’s doing anything.”

Meanwhile, nine icons were stolen from the Church of St. John the Theologian in the village of Ternoevoe in the Kharkov Province, reports kh.depo.ua.

Photo: hk.npu.gov.ua Photo: hk.npu.gov.ua

According to the site of the National Police Department in Kharkov, the 37-year-old man who broke in through the window of the church and stole the icons has been detained by employees of the Chuguev Police Department.

He quickly admitted his guilt.

A man living near the church had reported the broken window and missing icons to the police.

Criminal proceedings for theft have been opened, with a possible punishment of 3 to 6 years.

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