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By John-Henry Westen, LifeSiteNews, November 4, 2019

November 4, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — The man who tossed the infamous Pachamama statue into the Tiber River has revealed his identity today in a video explaining why he removed the “pagan idol” from Santa Maria in Transpontina church near the Vatican last month.

Alexander Tschugguel, 26, of Vienna, Austria, spoke to LifeSite co-founder John-Henry Westen, telling him, “for me, it was really bad, because I saw in those statues and in those idols…a break of the First Commandment.” He says he was motivated simply by the desire to “bring pagan things out of a Catholic Church.”

A convert from Lutheranism who embraced the faith 10 years ago, Tschugguel, who was in Rome covering the Amazonian Synod, told LifeSite that he consulted with a priest and prayed many rosaries with his wife before going through with it. “The spiritual preparation was everything,” he said.

When he arrived at the church, he discovered it was still closed. He decided to pray the rosary and the door was soon unlocked, entering the second it was opened. He stated that he was not worried about the consequences or if things didn’t go as planned.

“If we always think about what happens afterward, and if we always think that way, we will never get anything done.” If there is something bad happening in a Catholic Church “we have to act,” he said. “Whatever can happen, it can never be that bad.” The “worst thing” that could happen is to not get into heaven.

Watch his video statement about why he removed the statue below: