By William Mahoney, Ph.D.
The Archbishop of Montreal, Christian Lépine, has released a statement regarding Friday morning's attack on Fr. Claude Grou, a religious of Holy Cross and rector of St. Joseph Oratory.
"Father Grou suffered some injuries, however, thank God, he is not in danger," Lépine stated.
On Friday, Grou was stabbed while offering morning Mass. Security guards arrested the perpetrator and Grou was immediately rushed to the hospital.
The attacker, a 26-year-old man known to police, can be seen on video leaving his pew with a knife and charging the priest, chasing him around the altar before stabbing him in the chest. The knife broke during the attack, leaving the priest with minor injuries.
About 50 people were in attendance, and many more were watching the live stream. Adèle Plamondon was attending Mass and recounted, "I saw this man coming quickly and taking his knife out and going straight for Père Grou."
She realized instantly what was happening and rushed to alert security.
Though the priest suffered some injuries, he is not in danger and is expected to fully recover.
The archbishop offered his support to the priest's family, the Congregation of the Holy Cross, the employees of St. Joseph Oratory as well as those present at the Mass, the faithful everywhere and society.
Police have not yet released details as to the motives of the attacker.