Priest who claimed he was pulled over by cops for “dodgy” clear bags says he was pranking parishioners

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A SCOTS priest who claimed he was pulled over by cops over having a stash of “dodgy” clear bags in his car has revealed he was pranking his parishioners.

Father John Campbell from the Sacred Hearts Parish in Cumbernauld, Lanarkshire went viral yesterday after saying he was pulled over by police officers on Saturday night.

The 57-year-old told worshippers that had been out on a “sick call” but was found to have a stash of small, clear poly bags – which are often used by drug dealers.

Due to the current pandemic situation, Father Campbell had been using the bags to hand out to parishioners ahead of today’s Ash Wednesday service.

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Father Campbell

He posted about his alleged “run in with the law” on Facebook, where the post was re-shared and went viral across Twitter.

However, last night the mischievous clergyman told The Sun newspaper that the whole post was a prank for his parishioners.

He said: “It was just a funny wee prank but people have fallen for it.

“It’s been a mixture of people thinking it happened and wasn’t real.

“I was in a school this morning and one of the staff took it hook, line and sinker.

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Father Campbell took four days to admit that his post was a prank.

He added: “The prank grew from preparing bags of ashes. 

“I had them lying about and someone joked ‘you better hide them, people will think you’re a dealer.’”

Father Campbell’s original prank Facebook post, read: “Out doing a sick call tonight and got pulled over and asked why I was out of the house. 

“The officer didn’t quite believe or understand what I meant when I said these were for ashes for Wednesday.”

Father Campbell attached pictures of the small clear bags which are known to be used in the drug trade.

Since he shared his story, his post was then shared onto Twitter where social media users thought it was hilarious. 

A Twitter user shared a screenshot of Father Campbell’s post, writing: “Absolute gold from the priest on the chapel’s Facebook page.”

@bertiecauld said: “A wee line and communion wine please Father.”

@lauraKelly_X posted: “Priest on a mad one.”

@J0nIrwin_ commented: “Gearing up for Lent.”

Last night Father John Campbell was still joking about his mini bags, writing: “We are all ready for Ash Wednesday – 248 wee bags of ‘ash’ went out – just my wine cellar to empty before tomorrow – have a good evening”

Police Scotland were approached for comment yesterday but said they would need more information to comment.

Ash Wednesday is a holy day observed by Christians across the world and falls the day after Shrove Tuesday, or more commonly known as Pancake Tuesday. 

It marks the first day of Lent and the name derives from the placing of ashes on the foreheads of participants. 

The ashes come from burning palm leaves from the previous year’s Palm Sunday celebrations, which falls a week before Easter Sunday and the end of Lent.