People at a Roeland Park church are on high alert after a parishioner ended up face-to-face with a crook.
The sign on the door of the adoration chapel at St. Agnes Catholic Parish, located on Mission Road near West 53rd Street, says the chapel is closed until further notice. That's because a crook robbed someone in the small chapel that sits on the back side of the church when the person went there simply to pray.
The crime happened on Christmas morning.
"It's sad overall that someone would think that would be an ideal place to rob someone, especially on such a holiday as Christmas at a Catholic church. And shame on them and maybe shame on us if we don't immediately rectify that situation," Tim McCormack said.
McCormack has been a parishioner at St. Agnes for more than 30 years. He said the small chapel, which is reserved for private worship, is open 24 hours a day.
"It's scary anytime anyone is robbed, but especially I think the majority of parishioners that use the adoration chapel are probably older, and that makes it even more concerning to me," he said.
Richard Agnew stopped in Friday for adoration.
"It's perpetual adoration where we pray even during the night. Twenty-four hours a day someone comes to visit the Lord and for this to be interrupted by something like this, it's very sad and disturbing," he said. "There are some things that go beyond belief and this is one of those things."
Roeland Park Police are investigating the crime and could only say that the suspect got away with $50.
Many are left asking what the church will do to protect its parishioners in the future. Agnew, though, said he's just hurt by this unholy act, but he has forgiveness in his heart.
"To think someone would take advantage of someone who wants to be that close to God on Christmas morning of all days. It's very regrettable and I can only pray for someone like that and that God will forgive them, and I'm sure he will. But it's sad something like this happens," he said.
Father Bill Porter, the church's pastor, said he will have a statement for the parishioners at mass this weekend explaining exactly what happened and what's next.
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