Irving Church Vandalized, Robbed - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Irving Church Vandalized, Robbed

Thief steals nearly $10,000 from safe, collection boxes



    An Irving church is picking up the pieces after a thief stole thousands of dollars and destroyed part of the church's sanctuary.

    The Rev. Pedro Portillo said he found several broken windows and glass scattered across the floor of Iglesia Santa Maria de Guadalupe on Sunday morning.

    "The guy who [got] into the church, he did a lot of disgraceful things," he said.

    The thief can be seen on surveillance video walking around the church with a flashlight.

    Church Money Stolen, Sanctuary Damaged

    [DFW] Church Money Stolen, Sanctuary Damaged
    A person broke into a church, stole close to $10,000 and damaged the sanctuary.
    (Published Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012)

    Portillo said the man stole close to $10,000 from the church's safe and donation boxes. He said the church depends on the money to survive.

    "We pay the mortgage for the church," he said. "We pay the water bill, the electric bill... all the bills," he said.

    Portillo said the church also uses the money to help the community.

    But he said the damage to the church's altar inside the sanctuary upsets him more.

    "They broke the angel," Portillo said pointing to a statue at the altar.

    The thief also ripped up a Bible and threw bread used for communion across the floor.

    "For us, in our faith, this is Jesus," Portillo said as he held the bread.

    "If he came to get the money, he could get the money," he said. "Money, we can make it... But what they did to the altar, to our faith -- that more hurt for the people."

    Portillo said he hopes someone recognizes the man on the surveillance video and calls Irving police.