Virgin Mary statue stolen from Darnestown church recovered by Bethesda house of worship

A statue of the Virgin Mary that was stolen from outside a Montgomery County church earlier this month has been recovered by a nearby house of worship.

The statue was stolen Friday, February 10 from the Our Lady of the Visitation Catholic Church on Seneca Road in Darnestown, Maryland.

FOX 5’s Bob Barnard says the statue mysteriously reappeared Sunday morning at the River Road Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Bethesda – about 14 miles away from where it was taken. It's unclear why the statue was returned to the Bethesda church

After it was stolen, police released surveillance footage showing two suspects taking the statue.

Image of the statue of the Virgin Mary that was stolen from outside Our Lady of the Visitation Catholic 

The church's pastor, Father Greg Shaffer, called the theft "horrific." Church officials say they did not want to press charges against anyone involved, but only wanted the statue back.

Barnard said the recovered statue appears to be in good shape and undamaged.