Chairs fly and punches thrown as all hell breaks loose among 400-strong congregation.
It has to be: The Daily Mail.
A priest today described how he feared parishioners’ lives were in danger when a fight broke out in his church during midnight mass on Christmas Eve.
Monsignor Vincent Harvey said heavy chairs were thrown down an aisle at St Edmund’s Church, Southampton, during the fight in the middle of the service on Saturday night.
Police patrol cars and an ambulance raced to the historic church on The Avenue, Southampton, as other members of the congregation tried to break up the fight.
The priest managed to continue the mass to his shocked but uninjured congregation after police arrived to arrest those involved.
‘You often expect some drunken behaviour at the Christmas Midnight Mass but this was actually quite shocking,’ said Father Vincent Harvey.
‘But then about three or four minutes later, there were scuffles going on. Then it was obvious it was more than just a scuffle, there was actually a fight going on.’
‘I had to halt the Mass because the congregation were in considerable danger as chairs were being hurled down the aisle. Some of them were made of steel and could easily have injured people in the pews.’
He continued: ‘The person involved started throwing fairly heavy chairs down a side aisle, endangering people’s lives.
‘People were frightened that it was happening. If they’d hit anybody they could have been badly injured’…
‘Some of the congregation were worried about the statues in the church getting smashed but I told them not to be concerned about those, just to make sure they didn’t get injured themselves’…
Read more here.
The priest said: ‘I just asked people for a bit of silence so we could recollect ourselves and to pray for the person involved.
‘My sermon had been about how we are broken people, fragile people, and I said he is one of the very people I’m talking about.’
Ah, yes, Southampton…