All cases

Church of the Holy Trinity near Peć vandalised with Islamist graffiti

May 15, 2024, Kosovo

Unknown individuals broke into the Church of the Holy Trinity a village near Peć and vandalised it with graffiti. The messages included “Allah Akbar,” as well as Albanian phrases such as “Remove this church from here,” “Only Muslims are here,” “We don’t want churches, we want mosques,” and “Islam is the only true religion!”

Attempted petrol bomb arson attack on Glasgow Baptist Church

May 15, 2024, United Kingdom

On Wednesday, May 15, an unknown perpetrator tried to set fire to Dennistoun Baptist Church in Glasgow with a petrol bomb which exploded in front of the entrance door of the church. Images show the charred pavement in front of the church. Police received reports of attempts to damage Dennistoun Baptist Church on Finlay Drive at around 10:50 a.m., and an investigation has been launched.

Arson and Vandalism in Sainte-Thérèse de Poitiers

May 14, 2024, France

On May 14, benches were gathered in heaps and set on fire in front of the choir in the church of Sainte-Thérèse in Poitiers. Furthermore, a statue of Mary was beheaded by the vandals.

Man armed with knife caught in church

May 13, 2024, Poland

On Monday, May 13, a 40-year-old man entered a church in Czaplinek with a knife while a First Communion service for children was taking place. The adult worshippers overpowered the man and called the police. The latter detained him for disrupting the service. According to witnesses, the man was dressed all in black, held a long kitchen knife and was walking towards the priest.

LibDems reported to EHRC for deselecting Christian candidate

May 12, 2024, United Kingdom

More than 400 party members filed a complaint with the UK Equality and Human Rights Commission which accuses the Liberal Democrats of deselecting a candidate based on his Christian faith in breach of equality law and having tolerated a “hostile environment” for people of faith. David Campanale, an Anglican believer and award-winning former BBC journalist has been targeted by an activist group within the party who has been lobbying against him because of his Christian believes since his selection as a candidate in 2021. The campaign alleged that he had not sufficiently disclosed his faith during the selection process, which he denies, and complained that a decade earlier he had been a member of the Christian People’s Alliance (CPA).

Islamic graffiti on church wall in Vienna

May 12, 2024, Austria

Next to the entrance to the church of St. Anthony of Padua slogans written in black pen appeared on the wall. "Islam will win, with you or without," and "Deen over Dunya" ("Religion over worldly life") are just some of the numerous slogans on the wall. Some of the words have been crossed out or replaced, but the graffiti has not been removed.

Vandalism in Saint-Pierre-sur-Dives

May 9, 2024, France

On the night of Wednesday, May 8 to Thursday, May 9, Ascension Day, the abbey church of Saint-Pierre-sur-Dives was the victim of acts of vandalism. The tabernacle, where the consecrated hosts are kept, was forcefully opened, although nothing was stolen. Mass vestments were also vandalised. The parish priest, Father Donat, immediately lodged a complaint with the gendarmerie. The gendarmerie is investigating the accident.

Minors commit Arson and Vandalism at Church

May 8, 2024, Italy

Wednesday May 8, minors set fire to the Catheral of Casalmaggiore and vandalised it. The boys broke into the nave on the right side of the church where they broke the stoup into pieces and started a fire with candles. They then entered from the opposite side and went into a storeroom where the electrical panel that operates the lift and installations is located. The perpetrators could be identified thanks to surveillance cameras.

Lutheran church in Plettenberg "devastated" by vandals

May 5, 2024, Germany

On Saturday evening, May 5, the police were called to the Lutheran Böhler church in Plettenberg, because a witness had found "people rioting" there. Upon arrival the police found that the door had been smashed in and the wooden panelling was broken. The interior was "a picture of devastation", according to reports. The baptismal font was knocked over, a candelabra was torn down and a window was damaged. The organ on the upper floor was also demolished, as were parts of the roof truss. The damage is estimated by the presbytery to be at least 50,000 euros.

Fourteen Helpers Church tagged with swastikas

April 30, 2024, Germany

Unknown persons have scratched two swastikas and a runic symbol on the façade of Fourteen Helpers Church in Zeitzer Straße in Gera. According to the police, the offence is now being investigated not only for damage to property, but also for the use of anti-constitutional symbols.

Protestant church vandalised with graffiti referring to massacre of Protestants

April 30, 2024, France

A protestant church in France was vandalised with a graffiti reading “Long live Saint-Barthélemy”. Saint Barthélemy Day refers to the mass massacre of Protestants following 24 August 1572, in which between 15,000 and 30,000 Protestants were murdered in Paris and the provinces because of their faith. In this light, the graffiti is a particularly troubling display of anti-Protestant hatred.

Arson on St Theresa Church Grounds

April 29, 2024, United Kingdom

On 29 April a fire was discovered inside the garages on the grounds of St Theresa’s of the Child of Jesus Church in St Helens. A window of the church was also found to have been smashed. The Detective Police Inspector, Jimmy Rotheram, commented: "It’s truly shocking that a church, which is such a valued resource and focal point for the community, has been targeted in this way."

Consecrated Hosts stolen from Czestochowa Church

April 28, 2024, Poland

Unknown perpetrators broke into the church of Our Lady of Czestochowa and stole the consecrated host, which is considered as an act of desecration by Catholics. Two ciboria with consecrated hosts disappeared from the secure tabernacle, as discovered by parish priest Father Stanislaw Mikos during Sunday Mass.

Right-wing slogans and swastika daubed on church doors

April 27, 2024, Germany

In the village of Hesborn, the parish church and the cemetery chapel were smeared with right-wing slogans and symbols. Early on Saturday morning, April 27, a large swastika was found emblazoned on the church door and "Foreigners out" was written on the door to the cemetery chapel. Police and state security are investigating.

Arson in Haren Church

April 27, 2024, Germany

Unknown persons set a fire in a church in Haren between April 26 and 27. According to the police, the fire was set in the porch of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Church (Herz-Jesu-Kirche). Floor tiles were damaged as a result. The fire went out on its own.

Altar Cloth set on Fire in Capri Church

April 26, 2024, Italy

On Friday morning, April 26, an unknown perpetrator tried to set fire to the church of San Bernardino Realino in Carpi. After attempting to steal the offering box, he set fire to the tablecloth in the side chapel.

'Fire at the Vatican': Walls of Roman church defaced with graffiti

April 24, 2024, Italy

On Wednesday, April 24, the walls of the Church of the Immaculate Conception in San Lorenzo, Rome, were defaced with graffiti, including anti-Christian slogans. 'Fire at the Vatican', 'Freedom to anarchists', 'Trans liberation', 'Get the church out of our pants' and 'Free Palestine' were some of the inscriptions on the walls.

Vandalism in the Appels church

April 23, 2024, Belgium

On Tuesday evening, April 23, in the church of Appels in Dendermande, an act of vandalism was reported.

Repeated vandalism of chapel in Torfaen

April 23, 2024, United Kingdom

The chapel of Bethlehem Church in Blaenavon, in the south of Wales, has become a target of vandalism three times within three weeks. According to media reports, parts of the out buildings at Bethlehem Church have been vandalised and a wall and step were damaged. Furthermore, urine was discovered in the church doorway.

Vandalism: Windows smashed in Bonn Church

April 21, 2024, Germany

Since the weekend of April 21, the St. Franziskus church has had smashed windows since the weekend. The management board is shocked.

Vandalism and Fire in Hilders Church

April 21, 2024, Germany

On Sunday, April 21, unknown persons entered the Catholic Church of St. John the Baptist during official opening hours, tore flower decorations from the benches, destroyed sacrificial candles and burned paper in several places.

Vandalism and Islamic Graffiti inside Aachen Chapel

April 21, 2024, Germany

On Sunday, April 21, Ursula Becker, a member of the parish council at St. Katharina, Aachen, discovered garbage and graffiti in the parish's St. Mary Chapel. Among other things, "Allahu Akbar" was written on the walls and doors. The crime must have happened between 12 and 4 p.m.

Vandalism and Desecration of Church of Santa Maria in Albis

April 20, 2024, France

On Saturday night, April 20, individuals broke into the church of Sancta Maria in Albis, located in the heart of the village of Breil-sur-Roya.

Police accused for pressuring Tory party to unseat Councillor Stevens

April 18, 2024, United Kingdom

Media revealed that a police detective allegedly put pressure on the Wellingborough local Tory party to unseat councillor Anthony Stevens after Mr. Stevens had defended the freedom of speech of a Christian street preacher and a Christian councillor. According to reports, the police detective explained that “in her opinion” Mr Steven was “not a fit person to be a councillor” because of his free speech beliefs and used internal information ton put pressure on the local chair of the committee. The incident happened just before the police searched and detained Cllr Stevens for supporting the freedom of speech case of Christian councillor King Lawal on his personal Twitter account in August 2023. The incident has prompted accusations of political interference by police.

Passion Trail Vandalised

April 16, 2024, Germany

The Passion Trail set up by the Evangelical Lutheran parish in Hagen-Haspe has been demolished. The path, which was lined with crosses and prayer texts, led along the forest path at Tücking.

Brussels authorities ban event due to “ethically conservative” beliefs on abortion, marriage, and the EU

April 16, 2024, Belgium

On April 16, Brussels officials issued a police order to ban the entrance to the NatCon conference. The official order to shut down the conference included the reason that its "vision is not only ethically conservative (e.g. hostility to the legalisation of abortion, same-sex unions, etc.) but also focused on the defence of “national sovereignty”, which implies, amongst other things, a “Eurosceptic” attitude”. In an emergency ruling, Belgium highest court has lifted the ban and declared it unconstitutional.

England's High court backs prayer ritual ban at schools

April 16, 2024, United Kingdom

In its judgment on Tuesday, April 16, the High Court of England and Wales dismissed a Muslim pupil's challenge to a ban of 'prayer rituals' at Michaela Community School in Brent, north-west London. The High Court judged that publicly funded schools in England can impose such bans of communal prayer rituals among students. It is not yet clear in how far Christian prayer will be affected by the ban.

Grave of Late Patriarch Neophyte Desecrated

April 15, 2024, Bulgaria

The grave of the late Patriarch Neophyte was desecrated in Sofia, the Bulgarian Orthodox Church informed Tuesday morning, April 16.

Youth disturb concert in Cathedral shouting "Allah Akbar"

April 14, 2024, France

On Sunday, April 14, five adolescents entered the Saint-Etienne Cathedral in Metz during a concert of Bach, one of them interrupting the concert and shouting "Allah Akbar". The teenagers then fled but were found and arrested by the police.

Shouting Man Smashes Objects in Church

April 13, 2024, Italy

Shortly after 6 pm, a 41-year-old man started shouting complaining about an alleged theft of a backpack. According to the police, he then entered the church in Via Felice Bellotti, the San Benedetto Monastery, in Milan’s city centre and started to hit commemorative wreaths and a statue, which he threw to the ground. The police intervened against the intoxicated man, who was charged with a criminal offence.

Jesus Figure Stolen from Easter Crib

April 13, 2024, Italy

In the afternoon of April 13, a statue of Jesus was stolen from the Easter crib in the Consolation Parish in Via XX Settembre in Genoa. The first scene of the Easter crib displayed Jesus entering Jerusalem on the back of a donkey.

Arrest warrant for youths on suspicion of terrorist attack against "Christians and police"

April 12, 2024, Germany

The German national security forces have unearthed a terrorist cell of minors in Düsseldorf. According to the newspaper Bild, the youths wanted to attack "Christians ("unbelievers") in churches" and "police officers in police stations" with knives and Molotov cocktails in the name of the ISIS. Arrest warrants have been issued.

Sacred objects stolen from Great Yarmouth Minster upset community

April 12, 2024, United Kingdom

Great Yarmouth Minster Church was broken into twice within two weeks, first overnight between March 29 and March 30 and then again on April 12, 2024. Besides stealing money the thieves also broke the windows of the church and took sacred objects, namely the bread and wine which has been blessed and kept reserved and some of the sacred oils. "So many people in Yarmouth feel hurt by the fact that a place they consider special and important to community life has been violated," the church Reverend said.

Church façade vandalised during mass

April 10, 2024, Germany

On April 10, a young man threw several bottles filled with alcohol against the façade of the Catholic Sacred Heart Church in Diez during the church service at around 6 p.m, causing heavy soiling and property damage.

Theft and Arson in Church

April 10, 2024, Italy

At the church of Castelvecchio di Compito in the Lucca region, a 37-year-old man stole objects worth over 10,000 euros from the oratory, which included liturgical objects dating back to the early 19th century such as two candelabra and a wooden canopy. He set fire to the parish premises and fled.

Germany Issues Deportation Order for Iranian Convert

April 10, 2024, Germany

The administrative office for foreigners of Central Franconia, Germany, has issued a deportation order for an Iranian convert. According to the media, the lawyer of has confirmed the conversion to Christianity of the Iranian asylum seeker. The lawyer also said that his client had been warned by his mother not to return to Iran because otherwise he would be arrested.

Vandalism at St. Athanasius Monastery Church

April 9, 2024, North Macedonia

The church of St. Athanasius monastery in Tetovo has been broken in, all the windows were broken and serious material damage was done.

Purse stolen During Prayer at Mass

April 8, 2024, Italy

During mass on Monday, a pickpocket stole a purse containing about 100 Euro and the woman’s phone in the church of Sant'Aniello Abate in Cosenza. The theft happened while the woman was praying.

Archbishop receives criminal conviction for criticising Russia's war in Ukraine

April 8, 2024, Russia

According to the religious freedom watchdog organisation Forum 18, Archbishop Viktor Pivovarov has become the fifth person to receive a criminal conviction for criticising Russia's war in Ukraine from a religious perspective. On April 8, he was found guilty of repeatedly "discrediting" the Russian Armed Forces after condemning the war as "aggressive" and "Satanic" in his sermons.

Fire and Vandalism at Roßwein Church

April 6, 2024, Germany

On Saturday, April 6, unknown persons set fire to a memorial table of the Church in Roßwein and damaged the donation box.

Minors Set Altar on Fire

April 6, 2024, Austria

Two Children, one of them a 12-year-old boy, set a fire to the Serbian Orthodox Church of Our Lady in Feldkirch causing considerable damage. After searching the unlocked donation boxes for cash, they set the cloth at the altar in the back of the church on fire endangering liturgical objects.

Vandalism and Theft in Den Bosch Church

April 6, 2024, Netherlands

Burglars broke into St. John's Cathedral in Den Bosch, smashed stained-glass windows, emptied a fire extinguisher inside the building and stole a time capsule intended to be opened in the year 2122.

Arson attack on French Church

April 4, 2024, France

A fire broke out in the church of Saint-Jean-Baptiste in Agneaux on Thursday afternoon, April 4. According to police investigation's initial findings, the fire was intentional.

Desecration of Mission Cross

April 4, 2024, Poland

In the Church of St. Maksymilian Maria Kolbe in Bogatynia, a Mission Cross was chopped down over night.

Armenian Church Demolished in Nagorno-Karabakh

April 4, 2024, Other

Between December 28, 2023 and April 4, 2024, St. John the Baptist Church (S. Hovhannes Mkrtich) in Nagorno-Karabakh was destroyed, according to Caucasus Heritage Watch, referring to satellite pictures. The church was built in 1818 had been a landmark in Shusha/Shushi.

After Two Fires Church Temporarily Closed

April 3, 2024, France

Within 24 hours two fires hit the Saint-Serge Church in Angers. On April 2, the altar of the chapel of the Virgin Mary was set on fire. On the next day a fire broke out in front of the Saint-Ambroise statue. A suspect women was spotted and arrested by the police.

Church Smeared with Eggs, Glue and Dog Excrement

April 3, 2024, United Kingdom

Rivertown Church in Shotton was subject to vandalism. Eggs were thrown at the rear door. Previously, glue and dog excrement were smeared on the same door. Furthermore, the church has seen damage to both locks and seats inside. In light of the church’s effort in running a community hub, the incident appears very distressing to volunteers and the church community.

Controversy about secular court ruling on dismissal of a nun under canonical procedure

April 3, 2024, France

In an unusual case, a secular civilian court has issued a ruling against the Vatican’s in-house canonical procedures in the case of the dismissal of a French nun from her order and has sparked discussions on religious autonomy. On April 3, the Lorient tribunal ruled in favour of a nun who turned to the French court after being removed from a monastery in Brittany. The Vatican replied in a written statement that such a ruling on "internal discipline and membership in a religious institute" would be a "serious violation of the fundamental rights to religious freedom and freedom of association of Catholic faithful."

Church starts dialogue project after severe vandalism

April 2, 2024, Italy

On April 2, the parish priest of the St. Anthony's Oratory in Porto Mantovano, Trento, found the oratory severely vandalised. Next to smashed locks, broken doors and glass, damaged objects and furniture, there was dirt, a swastika and offensive writings on the floor. The incident, was only the latest in a series of vandalism attacks on the oratory. The priest therefore reached out to the community for help.

Scottish 'Hate Speech' Bill Could Limit Freedom of Religion

April 1, 2024, United Kingdom

The Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Act 2021 came into force on April 1, 2024. The Act could criminalise expressions of religious convictions, religious and human rights groups fear.