Police have warned priests and mass-goers not to sell midnight mass tickets on the black market in the run up to Christmas, as worried worshipers will part with up to £1000 according to a survey today.
Yesterday, three priests were arrested in the county for selling tickets for midnight mass at extortionate prices with one priest from Gortin throwing in a confession free of charge on the spot.
A spate of burglaries in Augher have been put down to desperate Catholics raiding houses rumoured to have tickets stashed away for the festive period.
A Vatican official issued a statement earlier, condemning the priests caught selling tickets after funerals and other services. Cardinal Schillaci added:
“This must stop. You should not be getting caught selling tickets for midnight mass, especially to the elderly. There are other ways to go about it. Selling tickets at funerals is despicable. Raffle them at an online bazaar or something.”
Meanwhile, the Vatican are considering a Pay Per View service for midnight mass for those without a ticket.