The patience of a saint has lately come in handy at the rectory of Saints Peter and Paul-Epiphany Parish regarding their Sacred Heart of Jesus statues. The most recent trial occurred around 5am on September 11th, of all days, a Sunday, of all days, when a very tipsy young man was caught on video trying to embrace the statue. His misguided, if heartfelt, efforts came to naught — as such efforts usually do — when he lost his balance and careened into the holy sculpture. The nearly 5-foot Sacred Heart of Jesus statue was broken off at its feet in the course of breaking this carouser’s fall.
This was the last of three offenses a Sacred Heart of Jesus statue has suffered while at its post outside the rectory of Williamsburg’s oldest Catholic church. An earlier altercation happened last May when Saints Peter and Paul-Epiphany Parish was heartbroken to find their century-old Sacred Heart of Jesus statue had been taken from its outside pedestal. Fortunately, not long after the theft someone found the statue in a waste bin and returned it to the church on discovering where it belonged. This icon was repaired and professionally cleaned by D’Ambrosio Ecclesiastical Art Studios. This studio donated another Sacred Heart statue and its pedestal to take the first one’s place as an exterior statue (once the first statue was repaired, it would reside inside the rectory). The second statue was larger and secured to its base with screws, which alleviated concerns anyone could run away with it.
Waleska Soto, who works at the rectory, said once again D’Ambrosio Ecclesiastical Art Studios are doing the repairs. When it is fixed the statue will return outside. Saints Peter and Paul-Epiphany Parish are looking into better measures to protect it from future harm.