The priest and faithful found the tabernacle and the Eucharist within it "precariously resting on the edge of the altar."
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Still recovering from the devastation wrought by 2017’s hurricane, in the last two weeks Puerto Rico has endured a barrage of over 1,000 earthquakes that have left one person dead and damaged at least 800 homes.
As a powerful earthquake shook the island, one Catholic church witnessed the dramatic rescue of its tabernacle and the Eucharist contained within it.
According to a CNA report, journalists with the local media operation El Vistante reported on the tabernacles’s rescue, which took place on January 7, minutes after a 6.4 magnitude earthquake left the church a heap of rubble. According to the report, the pastor and faithful of Immaculate Conception church in Guayanilla found the tabernacle “precariously resting on the edge of the altar” and removed it to a safer location.
The report noted that in spite of the destruction around it, the tabernacle did not fall to the ground.
“The early morning tremor destroyed the chapel, making the altar tilt forward. The tabernacle didn’t fall to the ground. It was almost suspended in the air lightly held up on the leaning altar,” reported El Vistante.
Templo de la Parroquia Inmaculada Concepción de Guayanilla se destruyó a causa del fuerte temblor registrado esta madrugada. Favor mantener la calma, orar y prepararse los 365 días. pic.twitter.com/ni9WqiV61w— El Visitante PR (@elvisitantepr) January 7, 2020
“The faithful took the tabernacle and went out in procession over the rubble. The faithful with the tabernacle, Fr. Orlando with the ciborium and Fr. Melvin with the large Sacred Host. They went to the rectory a few steps from the parish to protect the Blessed Sacrament with all the dignity it deserves,” read the report.
“They were the heroes of the Eucharist,” El Visitante reported.