200-year-old angel stolen from East Flemish church

The municipality of Kluisbergen, situated in the idyllic surroundings of the Flemish Ardennes, is in shock. The theft of a 200-year-old angel from the church in the village of Kwaremont is the main topic of conservation amongst locals in the rural municipality that usually only hits the headlines when the Tour of Flanders cycle race passes through it.  The angel was part of an 18th century pulpit. 

As is the case at many parish churches, especially in rural areas, the door to the church at Kwaremont is left unlocked to allow those that wish to engage in private prayer and reflection or to just visit the building to enter freely. However, a thief has taken advantage of the open house policy to remove the angel figure from the pulpit and take it away. The identity of the culprit and how he or she managed to remove the angel remains a mystery.

The wooden angel figure is at least 200 years old and was attached to the pulpit that is older still, dating back to the 18th century.

The Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Saint Amand Church Ronny Hillewaere told VRT Radio 2 East Flanders that “Our former parish priest always kept the angel under his bed. He was afraid that it would be stolen so it must be valuable”.

Mr Hillewaere added that “When the priest retired, we put the figure back in the church. I think that he will be cross with me if he hears that the angel has been stolen. He always took such great care of it and now we have lost it”. 

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