NY: Statue of Virgin Mary vandalized outside Catholic school in 'an act of hatred'
A VIRGIN Mary statue was vandalized outside a Catholic school in Queens in an act described as “disgraceful”. The word "idol" was daubed in black paint across the statue, by a vandal who was captured on surveillance footage.
The incident happened early on Friday outside Cathedral Prep School and Seminary in Queens.
Staff at the private Elmhurst high school discovered the vandalism when they arrived for work on Friday.
“Today, Cathedral Prep endured an act of hatred,” Father James Kuroly, Cathedral Prep’s rector and president, said, according to QNS.
“We were victims of vandalism against a beloved statue that is dear to generations of Cathedral students.”
Surveillance video shows the vandalism occurred at 3:09am, and the vandal appears to be a white man.
The footage shows him running up to the statue, scrawling his message in spray paint, and then casually strolling away from the scene.
The statue was cleaned and restored by Friday afternoon.
The NYPD is investigating the damage as a possible hate crime, the Diocese of Brooklyn reported.
Kuroly added: "This image of our most Blessed Mother is approximately 100 years old and each day, both students and passersby pray fervently for her intercession in front of the statue.
"Obviously, this tragedy saddens us deeply but it also renews our hope and faith in the Lord as he has shown his goodness in the many people who have already reached out to us.
"We are sincerely grateful for the help we have received as well as the prayers."
The statue of the Virgin Mary has been at the entrance of the boys school for over 100 years.