By Emily Drooby
It was a special moment outside of Cathedral Preparatory School and Seminary during the prayer service and rededication of a 100-year-old statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary, now restored after it was desecrated by spray paint almost a week ago.
“Well, we pass it every morning and Mary is our mother and she’s our guidance sometimes, pretty much all of the time. She guides us to do good and to better ourselves,” said Christopher Santagata, a student at the school.
The rededication was done on the feast day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
Cathedral Prep’s students, teachers and staff put summer break on hold to pray outdoors at the school in Elmhurst, Queens.
“Although I was upset, I knew that something good will always come out of evil,” explained student Patrick Rubi. “I knew that Father Kuroly was going to do something and it would be cleaned eventually, and that Our Lady would not remain dirty.”
Father James Kuroly, the school’s rector and president says he’s grateful to Catholic Cemeteries, the group responsible for quickly cleaning and restoring the Blessed Mother’s monument.
On July 10, the statue was vandalized and the word “idol” was written in thick black spray paint down the front. The incident is being investigated by the NYPD as criminal mischief.
But Thursday wasn’t about anger towards this suspect. Instead, it was a celebration of the school’s resilience and their faith
“What a beautiful site it is that we are able to have a day where we are able to stand with in intercession with the students, faculty, and with members of the Elmhurst community to really show that our faith and our love does not waver, it only gets stronger,” Fr. Kuroly told Currents News.