Blood of Bl. John Paul II stolen from Italian church
January 27, 2014
A reliquary containing the blood of Blessed John Paul II was stolen from a church in Italy on January 26.
The reliquary, along with a crucifix, was found missing after a break-in at the little church in San Pietro della Ienca, in the mountains of the Abruzzo region. Nothing else was taken from the church, and a caretaker suggested that the thieves may plan to seek ransom for the relic.
The blood, shed by Pope John Paul II when he was shot in an assassination attempt in 1981, was saved by his private secretary, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz. The Reuters news service reports that Cardinal Dziwisz gave a vial of blood to the church in Abruzzo “as a taken of the love [the late Pontiff] had felt for the mountainous region.”