Priest stabbed during mass at Canada’s biggest church

Montreal stabbing: Priest attacked during morning mass at Canada church | Daily Star

In a footage that was recorded during the Friday, March 22, live coverage on a Catholic television station, the man walked to the altar before he started chasing Claude Grou at St Joseph's Oratory in Montreal while holding a knife.

Father Grou, who is rector of the oratory, is seen stepping back to try to avoid the assault, then falling to the ground on his back as he is attacked. Sign-up now and enjoy one (1) week free access!

According to eyewitnesses, the accused, who was sitting among the faithful, "ran up to the priest and attacked him with a knife" while the priest was celebrating mass.

The priest was allegedly stabbed after the man charged at him from behind the rectory, with a local witness describing the weapon simply as a "sharp object". She said that security agents intervened rapidly during the attack and prevented it from "degenerating".

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The motive for the attack remains unknown, the Dialog reported. He is expected to appear by video feed Saturday afternoon at the Quebec Court Criminal Room.

Plamondon volunteers at the Oratory every Friday and told Global News she thought that attacker "was going to kneel in front of the Saint Joseph statue".

Church spokeswoman Celine Barbeau said Grou was conscious when he was rushed from the scene.

Montreal's mayor, Valerie Plante, condemned the act of violence.

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A number of politicians extended their prayers to Father Grou wishing for a quick recovery, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

When police officers arrived at approximately 8:40 a.m., security guards on site had already apprehended the alleged perpetrator, who appeared to be a tall, bearded man reported to be 26 years old.

About two million people visit the church each year.

The incident happened on Friday in Montreal.

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