A church has been left counting the cost after being targeted twice by burglars over the festive period.
St Peter and St Paul’s Parish Church in Rishton was broken into three days before Christmas with offenders stealing £250 in charity cash collected by children.
Burglars targeted the church again between New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day and destroyed a Victorian stained glass window worth £3,000.
Lancashire Police said they have been informed of both break-ins, however no arrests have been made.
Fr Chris Holden said the break-ins are ‘incredibly sad’ but has praised the response of the community.
He said: “The first time they broke into the church hall and pretty much rooted around the building and disrupted everything.
"Sadly the only thing they took was £250 in charity money which had been raised by the children.
"They had been giving their loose change and it was going towards The Children’s Society.
“The upside of that was the local Station Hotel the following night held a whip round and raised over £250, which was really nice.
“The second time they smashed one of the Victorian stained glass windows and caused about £3,000 in damage. They only ended up taking about £1.20 of loose money in a pot.
“It’s just incredibly sad really. Being a church we are very much a community building and we are very much loved and respected in the town.
"This has upset a lot of people and it makes it even worse that it happened around Christmas and New Year.”
Fr Holden said the offenders should have asked the church for help instead of resorting to stealing.
He said: “The annoying thing is that if that person who did this was really in need then the church would have been there to help.
“They only need to ask. They don’t need to steal. The Christian voice is one of outstretched arms of love and I’m sure we would have done our best to try and help them.
“The positive thing to come out of this is the community spirit. With other donations we now have over £500.”
Lancashire Police said the first incident happened on December 22 and the second incident was between December 30 and January 1.
Anyone with information call 101.