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Police arrest man attempting to enter NY cathedral carrying two cans of gas, lighter fluid and lighters

Religious establishments are on edge due to recent incidents

Bagpipers pass St. Patrick's Cathedral during the annual New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade on March 16, 2019 (JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images)

A man who police believe may have been emotionally disturbed was arrested Wednesday night when trying to enter St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York City with gas, lighter fluid and lighters, according to WNBC-TV.

The suspect was identified as 37-year-old Marc Lamparello of New Jersey. He was stopped at the cathedral entrance by security and taken into custody by New York Police Department Officers without incident.

Fox News reported that Lamparello was carrying two cans of gas, two bottles of lighter fluid, and two butane lighters when he was stopped.

NYPD reportedly maintained a "heavy presence" around the cathedral even after Lamparello's arrest.

The destruction of houses of worship, both intentionally and unintentionally, has been in the news recently.

Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris nearly burned to the ground in what French authorities still believe was an accidental fire caused by renovations.

In Louisiana, three predominantly black churches were destroyed within a 10-day period by an arsonist.

Police arrested Holden Matthews, a 21-year-old suspect who is the son of a sheriff's deputy and has been charged with hate crimes on top of arson.

In the case of Notre Dame, donors have put up hundreds of millions of dollars to fund rebuilding efforts. Inspired by the Notre Dame fundraising, more attention was brought to the fundraising efforts for the Louisiana churches.

As of Wednesday night, a GoFundMe for the churches had nearly reached its $1.8 million goal with donations from normal citizens and celebrities alike.

"The rebuild of Notre Dame will be well funded," journalist Yashar Ali wrote. "In the past month, three historically black churches in Louisiana were destroyed by a racist arsonist. He has been charged with hate crimes, but these churches need your help. Please join me in donating."

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