Parishioners greeted by police tape at Oshawa church

| December 28, 2009

OSHAWA — Some parishioners arrived for mass at St. Phillip the Apostle Catholic Church in Oshawa Sunday, unaware that the church had been struck by fire early Christmas morning.

A sign on the door read 'No service due to fire', the church closed by a suspicious fire that broke out just after 5:30 a.m. Friday.

Durham Regional Police were called to a fire at St. Phillips on Oxford Street at dawn Christmas morning where officers and the Oshawa Fire Department found three broken windows where they believe someone had gained access to the church.

According to police, the fire was quickly contained but there was extensive smoke damage. An estimate of the damage is still being determined. There were also damaged statues outside. No one was injured.

Police are working with fire officials as the investigation continues.

This is the second major fire at a church in Durham Region this month. All Saints Church in Whitby was damaged by fire on Dec.14. According to police, it is too early to determine if there is any connection between the two incidents.

Police would like to speak to anyone who may have information about this incident or who was in the Oxford Street area in the early morning hours. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call 17 Division CIB at 1-888-579-1520 ext. 2704. Anonymous tips can be made to Durham Regional Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

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Category: Church Security

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