Food hampers, donated for a Christmas appeal, have been stolen from a Co Down church.
In a brazen theft, robbers lifted the hampers during a sermon about food poverty at St Malachy’s in Hillsborough yesterday.
Six boxes of food were stolen from the entrance hall of the church as parishioners sat just a few metres away.
The food collections were due to be donated to the East Belfast Mission, which distributes Christmas hampers to people in need, including families struggling to get by.
The theft was spotted after the morning service had concluded, and church authorities reported it to police at around 12.30pm.
Church curate, Reverend Mike Dornan, said he was shocked when he learnt the boxes had been taken. “I was literally stunned,” he said.