Church in Coche suspends mass after an armed robbery

Armed robbers entered the parochial house in the San Pedro Apostol Coche church and stole valuables after issuing death threats. The priest decided to stop mass service until further notice.

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By Karina Vásquez.

Robberies in Nueva Esparta state, a top tourism destination in Venezuela because of its beautiful beaches, have been increasing in number but also in severity. So much so, that it is not only threatening its tourist status but even its relationship with God.

Father Julio Espana, the parishioner of the Coche island located in the Nueva Esparta archipelago, told El Pitazo that he was struck, gagged, and tied up by criminals who entered his church and stole several belongings and church valuables, including consecrated artifacts.

Father Espana denounced what he termed a “painful shortage of human and spiritual values,” and demanded that the faithful pray to God, “does not take into account these very grave sins but the thousands of good souls who worship the Holiest Sacrament”.

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The church at San Pedro Apostol, on the quiet, tiny and beachy island of Coche, was hit by armed robbers, forcing clergy to suspend religious services until further notice.

Death threat

Residents demanded that the government helps to keep the island safe or at least increases security in places such as the beach, the local hospital, and the church.

Judicial police were notified and visited the premises to start an investigation and fieldwork to determine the responsible for this sacrilege.

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