In March, a strange package was delivered right to the doorsteps of Our Lady of Grace Church in Hoboken, New Jersey. It turned out the suspicious package was a lovely blessing just in time for Easter! The contents reminded parishioners that despite everything, people are good, and they still choose to do what’s right even after decades.
The shabbily wrapped package aroused Rev. Alex Santora’s suspicion, as there was no return address written on it.
“Some red flags went up because it didn’t have a name—just the church, no return address,” said Santora, according to Fox 43.
With recent serial exploding packages in Austin still fresh in Santora’s mind, he called the police to investigate.
Soon afterward, two police officers arrived. They used a heat-detecting device to determine whether there was any explosive in the box.
Once it was ascertained there was no incendiary bomb in it, an officer gingerly opened the package.
Much to everyone’s surprise, the package contained the answer to an unsolved 90-year-old mystery.
Inside, they found a note, and a small statue of baby Jesus, which had been mysteriously stolen from the church in the 1930s.
The unsigned note dated early January read:
“My Mom told me that the Baby Jesus had been stolen from the church Nativity display at Our Lady of Grace when she was a young girl of about twelve years of age in the early 1930’s. It came into her father’s possession somehow, and I don’t know why he didn’t return it. Instead, he gave it to my Mother after she was married, and she too kept it until her passing when it came to me. Knowing the story, I felt it should be returned to the rightful owner, and you will find it enclosed.”
The missing statue was finally returned to the church by this unknown sender after more than eight decades.
Amazingly, the plaster statue is still in good condition with “only a chip on the bottom.”
Santora tried to locate the sender, but the package’s postal tracking number only traced back to Crystal Springs, Florida, and he didn’t find a name.
“I think it’s admirable to know that even after all these decades someone knows you can do the right thing just return it,” said Santora. “I think its [sic] an affirmation that people always have to try to do the right thing and, in this case, someone did.”
To receive the baby Jesus statue just in time for Easter, the parishioners felt blessed.
“When something comes home after all these years, it’s a little Jesus, it’s like a lost child coming home,” a parishioner, Rose Dukic, told ABC 7.
“I think it’s lovely. People are good,” another parishioner told News 12 New Jersey.
The baby Jesus statue will be placed in the church’s Nativity scene this coming Christmas.
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