VIENNA — Holy water given out at religious shrines, churches and hospital chapels throughout Austria is often contaminated with fecal matter and bacteria, according to a Reuters report.

The Sept. 18 story said researchers have advised people not to drink it.

Scientists at Vienna University medical school's Institute of Hygiene and Applied Immunology analyzed water samples from 21 "holy" springs and 86 percent of the samples were contaminated.

Some of the springs also tested positive for agricultural nitrates and bugs that can cause inflammatory diarrhoea.

Microbiologist Alexander Kirschner said in the story, "We need to warn people against drinking from these sources."

To read the entire story, click here.