Statue of saint at Winnipeg Ukrainian Catholic church decapitated, cross stolen

A statue of a saint that was blessed by a Pope at a Winnipeg cathedral has been decapitated, and its cross stolen.

The statue of St. Volodymyr at the Ukrainian Catholic Metropolitan Cathedral of Sts. Vladimir & Olga on McGregor Street, between Flora and Stella Avenues, was found headless early Tuesday morning.

Residents of an apartment block across the street were woken in the early hours by a grinding sound, a staff member at the Ukrainian Catholic church said Wednesday.

Travis Golby/CBC

When people went to investigate, the statue's head had been stolen, along with its cross.

The statue, which the staff member said was done by well-known Winnipeg sculptor Leo Mol, was blessed by Pope John Paul II in 1984.

Police say they're aware of the incident, which is being described as a vandalism and theft. It's believed to have taken place around 4:30 a.m. Tuesday, police say.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Winnipeg Police Service at 204-986-6222. Information can also be provided anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 204-786-TIPS (8477).

Travis Golby/CBC