Archbishop John C. Favalora is asking for an $8,000 stolen sacred tabernacle to be returned.

At a mass held in Hialeah on Saturday, Favalora prayed for thestolen jeweled box to be returned.

The custom-made, Spanish-imported jeweled box was stolen late last week. But it contains something Catholics consider far more important than money: the Eucharist, a symbol of the body of Jesus Christ.

According to the Archdiocese of Miami, the theft amounts to sacrilege.

Pastors and churchgoers across Miami-Dade have resorted to prayer and are asking the thieves to return the tabernacle and its contents to any Catholic church or police station.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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