Vandalism Against Relic of Christ in Spain

Someone etched Satanic symbolism into the protective glass — yet the Holy Face remained unharmed

Was it an act inspired by the occult — or an offensive prank by someone who may be mentally unstable? That is the question stirred by an act of vandalism at a monastery in Madrid, Spain.

As security cameras made clear, a young woman scratched “666” into the glass that shields the veil believed to be used to wipe the face of Christ by Veronica when Jesus was on His way to be crucified. The vandalism occurred somewhere between the nighttime hours of Saturday, March 6, and the dawn of Sunday, March 7. The diocese also found upside-down crosses on several Stations of the Cross.

“We are praying to God, Our Lord, for whomever caused this damage.”

The sacred veil is said to bear the image of Christ’s face and is a precious relic to the Roman Catholic Church.

The young woman who hid inside the church and attempted to break the security glass before finally defacing its surface has been identified and is expected to be arrested. However, rather than respond in fear or anger, the diocese made a statement of forgiveness and compassion, saying, “We are praying to God, Our Lord, for whomever caused this damage.”

Regardless of the woman’s motivation, the act is a reminder that evil exists in the spiritual realm in the world. As the passage 1 Peter 5:8 warns Christians, “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.”

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Sometimes spiritual warfare seems like something Hollywood made up to sell tickets. Maybe it feels like nothing more than urban legend meant to terrify wayward youths. But the Bible is clear that Satan exists — and that his desire is to destroy God. There is a battle waging for the souls of men and women.

And yet, despite the evil that lurks in the world, despite despondency, darkness and depression, God is greater. His love is stronger. His mercy and grace surpass wickedness.

Paul, who experienced great hatred for Christians before his own conversion on the road to Damascus, wrote in Romans 8:38, “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels or demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow — not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.”

Related: The Divine Gift of the Marian Apparitions at Fatima

How good is the assurance of God’s power and His love? The promise of eternal life overcomes the fear of spiritual death. The light of Christ forever extinguishes the threat of darkness.

Katie Nations is a working mother of three young children based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. 

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