Police report more thefts of Christmas gifts from Biddeford-area churches

Posted Dec. 20, 2011, at 2:20 p.m.
Last modified Jan. 27, 2012, at 2:10 p.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — Police in southern Maine are investigating thefts of Christmas donations from Catholic churches in the Biddeford area.

Parishoners of Good Shepherd Parish have been making donations of gift cards and other presents as part of an outreach ministry for the poor and elderly, according to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland.

On Friday, church volunteers reported a theft of gift cards that had been collected at St. Philip’s in Lyman, while a similar theft took place earlier last week at Most Holy Trinity Church. The Saco and Biddeford Police Departments, along with the York County Sheriff’s Department, are leading the investigation. Both churches belong to the same parish.

While the exact dollar amount of the loss can’t be determined, several parishioners stepped forward with new donations when notified of the situation this past weekend, the diocese said in a press release. The parish intends to follow through with the Christmas gift-giving program.