German thieves steal late Pope Benedict’s cross
A cross belonging to former pope Benedict XVI which he was wearing on his chest has been reportedly stolen from the wall of St. Oswald’s church in Traunstein, southern Germany where it was displayed.
According to Agency France-Presse, the police said the pectoral cross was in a case in the wall of the church in the state of Bavaria, where the late Benedict spent his adolescent years.
The burglars broke and stole the item, which the former pope had bequeathed to the parish, between 11:45 am (0945 GMT) and 5:00 pm (1500 GMT) on Monday.
“For the Catholic Church, the value of this sacred object cannot be quantified,” Bavarian police said in a statement.
Police also said that the yet-to-be-identified thieves broke into a cash register of a magazine stand and stole the money inside.
They are appealing for witnesses who may have seen anyone acting suspiciously around the church on Monday.
Benedict, who in 2013 became the first pontiff in six centuries to step down as head of the Catholic Church, died in December aged 95 after a long period of declining health.