THE mother of The Cranberries lead singer Dolores O’Riordan says she will get a mass said for the person who stole the statue of Our Lady from her local church and offer them a reward, if they return it.
Eileen O’Riordan was left heartbroken after a number of statues - which had been used for decades in the Christmas crib at Ballybricken Church - were stolen.
And while the figures have been recovered, the statue of Our Lady remains unaccounted for.
“I’m still hoping - it would be really special if I got her back. I would leave a reward and we would get a mass said for him (the person who took the statue),” Eileen told the Limerick Leader.
The community of Ballybricken were alerted to the missing statues last month when they noticed that a picture of Sr Faustina had been removed from the side altar.
“It was just the week after my sister’s funeral. The parish priest had a good painting at the side altar of Sr Faustina and he missed it. There was a small little picture as well of the crown of thorns, we didn’t get that back but we got the picture of Sr Faustina back,” she explained.
Further searches in the church showed that all the statues for the crib except one shepherd and the three wise men were also missing.
“The sacristan found one of the statues – the shepherd in the hallway. Whoever took the statues were disturbed because they left the three wise men as well. We were very upset. It was a terrible shock. Those statues were there for as long as I can remember because I used to help the sacristan when I was small. I was very upset over them. This was very traumatic for me – maybe because of the time it was, we were all upset in the parish. I was baptised there, got my First Holy Communion there and was married there in our little church. To think that we have to lock our church now is very sad,”
*A full version of this story was published in the Limerick Leader, print edition, dated December 3, 2011.