All cases

Perpetrators Vandalized Churches Along The Pilgrimage Route of Saint James

May 1, 2021, Italy

During the night of 30 April to 1 May, unknown perpetrators vandalised two churches, as well as, monuments and streetlamps illuminating the Barbaresco-Tower.  Windows of the San Bernardo Chruch were smashed in with stones. The stones also damged the ambo, causing it to fall and break. Another Church along the Pilgrimage route of Saint James was also affected. It has been reported that the perpetrators smashed beer bottles against the walls of the thousand-year-old church of San Giorgio. A few monuments and streetlamps illuminating the Barbaresco-Tower have also been vandalized and damaged through stones. Residents reported the incident and Town-Councillor Laura Gandolfo ordered an immediate investigation.

Church In Schlema Damaged

April 30, 2021, Germany

Between 29 to 30 April, unknown perpetrators broke the window of a church in Schlema. According to the police a side entrance door of the church was smashed and an unknown liquid was applied to the facade of the building. The damage amounts up to 2.000 Euros. The police are investigating for damage to property.

Finish MP Charged for Hate Speech After Bible Post on Twitter About Human Sexuality

April 29, 2021, Finland

MP Pävi Räsänen is facing three criminal charges for alleged hate speech brought against her by the Finnish Prosecutor General. This is not the first time MP Räsänen is being investigated for hate speech by the police but the first time she is confronted with criminal charges. The medical doctor, mother of five, and grandmother of six is ​​accused of having engaged in “hate speech” for publicly voicing her opinion on marriage and human sexuality in a 2004 pamphlet, for comments made on a 2018 TV show and, most recently, a tweet directed at her church leadership. The Prosecutor General considers that Räsänen's statements are likely to cause intolerance, contempt and hatred towards homosexuals. The charges will be heard later at the Helsinki District Court.

Cemetery In Nowa Wieś Ełcka Vandalised

April 26, 2021, Poland

After the cemetery in Nowa Wieś Ełcka was first vandalised and then destroyed by felled trees, it is now to be restored to its original state. The bishop of the parish, Paweł Hause, said: "Destroying the sign of the cross, which is on an old gravestone, by handling it with heavy equipment, overturning it, destroying it and burying it, offends the feelings of all Christians - Catholics, Evangelicals, Orthodox. It was the residents of the village, Catholics, who first pointed out this anti-Christian behaviour. Whatever the perpetrators and those responsible say, there has been a lack of respect for the dead and for the cemetery, which is and should remain holy ground."

Vandalistic Attack In Gussago After Priest Speaks Out

April 26, 2021, Italy

The priest's car, the church façade and the surveillance cameras of the church of Gussago, Franciacorta, were vandalised the night before 26 April. The perpetrators were a group of youths who had been celebrating frequently during services, next to the church the days before. After the parish priest Don Adriano Dabellani complained and called the carabinieri, vandalistic acts were perpetrated in the following nights, probably in revenge. The vandals wrote blasphemies on the priest's car, as well as on the façade of the church. Police are investigating.

Sainte-Thérèse Church In Évreux Subjected To Series Of Degradations

April 23, 2021, France

On the night of 22 April, the church of Sainte-Thérèse de l'Enfant Jésus in the Nétreville district of Évreux was the victim of a burglary for the seventh time in six months. In the process, a wooden statue of the Virgin Mary was found lying on the floor with large cuts to its head, having been subjected to repeated attempts at destruction in the days before. The other complaints in the intervening period include damage to several entrances to the interior of the church and the theft of numerous religious items. Meanwhile, a suspect has been arrested. The police is investigating.

Vandalism On The Steps Of The Church Of San Francesco

April 23, 2021, Italy

After the stone capital on the steps of the Marian Sanctuary of San Francesco all'Immacolata in Corso Vittorio Emanuele in Noto was vandalised, the perpetrator has now been identified and reported. The police were able to gather useful clues with the help of images from the video surveillance in the area, which made it possible to establish the identity of the vandal. It is a 33-year-old man already known to the police, who is facing charges of serious damage to historical objects - a Unesco World Heritage Site.

Pastor Arrested In Greater London for Public Preaching on Biblical Marriage

April 23, 2021, United Kingdom

Pastor John Sherwood, the pastor of a church in North London, preached a sermon on a public street on 23 April, in which he advocated for the biblical image of the family consisting of a father, mother and children and that marriage can only be between a man and a woman. After a while, some police officers appeared on the scene, approached Pastor Sherwood and stated that three complaints had been received about the sermon. After a lengthy conversation between the pastor and the police officers, the police officers asked him to come down from the steps where he was standing and said that he was now under arrest. The police accusation was that Pastor Sherwood had made homophobic remarks. An officer then took the Bible from the pastor's hand, pulled him off the steps and handcuffed him behind his back. The pastor was arrested for causing alarm and distress under section 5 of the Public Order Act, according to police. The preacher was detained by the police for about 21 hours, and he is still under investigation after his release.

Bust Of St. John Paul II Vandalised In Front Of Polish Church In Paris

April 19, 2021, France

On 19 April, in front of the Polish Church of the Assumption at 'Concorde' in Paris, the bust of St John Paul II was vandalised . An unknown perpetrator covered the bust with red paint. Father Paweł Witkowski mentioned the great merits and achievements of John Paul II, who "certainly did not deserve such treatment". The case is being investigated by the police.

Vandals Repeatedly Damaged Church In Golasecca

April 18, 2021, Italy

For the second time in a month, the church of Lazzaretto in Golasecca has been vandalised. This time the perpetrators damaged the door and vandalised the interior. Unknown persons had already broken into the small sacred building on 21 March, at which time the parish priest had filed a complaint with the Carabinieri. The church of Saints Simon and Judas is located in the woods near the village. The police are investigating.

Church-Door In Montecatini Set On Fire

April 15, 2021, Italy

On the afternoon of 15 April, a fire was set at the door of the church of Saints Jacopo and Filippo in Montecatini Alto. The door was partially destroyed. The fire brigade and the Carabinieri intervened right away. So far, there seem to be no direct witnesses to the arson, which can be safely assumed. The police are investigating.

Woman Destroys Consecrated Objects In Church In Düsseldorf

April 12, 2021, Germany

A woman vandalised sacred objects in the sanctuary of the Maxkirche in Düsseldorf between 12 and 16 April. The perpetrator threw candles and altar cloths on the floor. The congregation is shocked at the extent of the devastation. The city Deacon, Frank Heidkamp, said: "An adult woman threw candles, candlesticks, floral arrangements, altar cloths and sacrificial candles on the floor during normal opening hours last week and obviously caused this devastation with wanton intent." The case was recorded on a security camera and has already been handed over to the police, who is now investigating.

Vandals Devastate Cemetery In Mosina

April 12, 2021, Poland

Vandals attacked the parish cemetery in Mosina during the night of 11 to 12 April. Broken candles and other damages were found. The case was also investigated by the police, who have already arrested one person. The city police also found a vandalised car in a nearby car park.

Unknown Perpetrators Destroy Organ Pipes of Church In Höxter

April 11, 2021, Germany

In Höxter, unknown perpetrators vandalised the church of St. Anna on 11 April. Inside the church they destroyed the ornamental organ pipes. The vandals also lit candles, spread matches on the floor and left two notes with inscriptions. The damage to property amounts to 1.000€. The incident was reported to the police.

Cassino Cemetery Reconsecrated After Red-Light Meetings

April 10, 2021, Italy

After red-light parties with prostitutes were held in the Cassino cemetery, the local church officials felt compelled to return sanctity to the desecrated place and rededicate the cemetery. "This rite of reparation", the diocese said, "became necessary as a result of the recent judicial investigation of the management of the municipal cemetery, which revealed serious acts that qualify as desecration of the bodies. In the name of the Church and representing the entire community of Setina, we went to the cemetery, prayed for the deceased buried there and renewed the rite of blessing the cemetery as an act of reparation for the desecration and sacrilege committed."

Arson at Church In Gelsenkirchen

April 5, 2021, Germany

A fire broke out in the empty church of St. Mary's Assumption in Gelsenkirchen on the evening of Easter Monday, 5 April. The fire brigade was on the scene with 80 emergency personnel. The fire started inside the building and had broken out into the sacristy. From there, the fire spread to the nave and smoke came out of the roof. While the cause of the fire was initially completely unclear, the police announced the following day that "deliberate arson is to be assumed".

Church In Paris Robbed And Desecrated

April 4, 2021, France

On the night of Easter Sunday, thieves gained entry into the Église Saint-Joseph des Nations church in Paris. They escaped with the proceeds of the collection, two sacred vessels and a consecrated host. According to Aleteia, “the thieves took away the large chest containing the proceeds of Easter collections, three (empty) boxes and two ciboriums that they located by forcing the doors of the tabernacle. The hosts were found on the altar tablecloth, while the large host used for adoration was taken away by the vandals. The police are investigating.

Church in Aichach Tagged with Insulting Graffiti "Hypocrite Church = Child Molester" During Easter Week

April 4, 2021, Germany

On the night of Easter Sunday, April 4th, unknown perpetrators tagged the facade of the town parish church in Aichach with an insulting and stereotyping slogan. In the morning, the sacristan reported the damage to property to the police. The police are investigating.

Unknown Perpetrators Loot Offertory Box Of Church In Corigliano Scalo

April 4, 2021, Italy

In the days immediately before Easter, the parish of Saints Leo and Nicholas in the town of Scalo in the Gallo D'Oro area was targeted. During the night, unknown persons broke into the church through a smashed window and stole from the church interior only a few coins that were kept in the offertory. They also broke open a door and stole a loudspeaker. The police are investigating.

Easter Service in Nidda Disrupted By Three Young Men Scanting Islamic Slogans

April 3, 2021, Germany

Three unknown, alcoholised young Muslim men have disturbed the Easter Vigil service of the Evangelical Lutheran Church "Zum Heiligen Geist" in Nidda, Central Hesse. According to the church congregation, they repeatedly attacked worshippers (especially children and teenagers) and shouted "There is only one God, and that is Allah" and "Allah is the greatest". The unknown perpetrators had already insulted some of the worshippers outside the church and even filmed them. The perpetrators were asked to leave numerous times, also because they did not wear masks but refused to do so. The State Security Service has started an investigation for disturbing the exercise of religion.