Activist Graffiti found on Church Properties in Poland
Date of incident: July 3, 2018
Category: Social Hostility / Intolerance
Attack against: Faith / Morals
Area of case: Private
Graffiti was found on several church buildings in the wake of a discussion on stricter abortion legislation by the Polish parliament. The spray-painted slogans included “Behold my body, behold my blood, buzz off”; “women-murderers” and “We remember Rwanda.” The three damaged buildings included the curial offices of the Archdiocese of Warsaw, the rectory of the Church of St. John the Baptist, and the curial offices of the Diocese of Warsaw-Praga.
Activist Natalia Broniarczyk, who is proudly “pro-abortion, not just pro-choice,” posted several photographs of the spray-painted slogans on her Facebook page with the comment, “Perhaps what has begun in Ireland is in Poland. We are anti-church because the church is anti-woman.”
The vandalism occurred hours after the so-called “Polish Women’s Strike” held a small protest outside Poland’s parliament, or Sejm, in Warsaw. Natalia Broniarczyk was a speaker at the rally on Monday, the 2nd of July 2018. She told the crowd that she was fed up with politicians who “on the orders of the Church” were creating an “anti-woman” abortion law and “forcing” Polish women to travel internationally to have abortions.
The “Zatrzymaj aborcje” (“Stop abortion”) bill, a citizens’ project signed by more than 830,000 Poles, was discussed in the Polish parliament that day. The bill seeks to remove an unborn child’s illness or disability as a condition for which he or she can be aborted.
Father Bogdan Bartołd told Polish media that he found the inscriptions shortly before 7 a.m. Tuesday when he went to Mass. They had not been there at 9 p.m. the previous evening when he had come back from a concert. He believed the graffiti was the work of opponents of the “Zatrzymaj aborcję” bill, a suspicion at least partly borne out by Broniarczyk’s Facebook photographs and remarks, as LifeSite News reports.
Other Facebook users reacted to Broniarczyk's post, saying vandalism was vandalism no matter what they were fighting for, another user commented “do you think that arson would look better?”.
The police began an invesigation.