All cases

Churches in the Vendée Repeated Targets of Vandalism

February 3, 2019, France

Over the course of several months, statues have been pushed to the ground and broken into a thousand pieces, stones have been thrown at the stained glass windows, and the stoups and Christmas crèches have been damaged in two churches, Saint-Gilles and Sainte-Croix, in the parish of Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie in the Vendée. Similar damage has occurred in the neighboring town of Saint-Hilaire-de-Riez.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Church Vandalized in Kaiserslautern

February 2, 2019, Germany

The church "Am Heiligenhäuschen" was smeared with paint by unknown vandals late in the evening of February 2nd. Police are investigating.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Catholic School Vandalized with Graffiti

January 31, 2019, Spain

The exterior wall of the colegio de la Trinidad in Vistalegre was painted with vulgar anti-church graffiti. This school, whose interior houses a chapel, belongs to the Diocesan Teaching Foundation of Santos Mártires de Córdoba.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Religiously-Motivated Murder of Christian Iraqi in Salzgitter

January 27, 2019, Germany

A 33-year-old Syrian man was arrested for the murder of his sister's lover, a 25-year-old Christian Iraqi. The prosecutor said the background of the crime may have been that the victim and accused belong to different religions and probable motive was that the accused, a Muslim, did not approve of his sister living with an "infidel."

Hate Crime

Diocesan House of Grenoble Hit with Graffiti; Windows and Doors Damaged

January 19, 2019, France

On the 14th of January, the Diocesan House of Grenoble hosted a pro-life event which drew a few hundred protesters. Between the 14th and 19th of January, graffiti was sprayed on the outer walls of the house and then between January 19th and 21st, its glass windows and doors were smashed.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

St Simeonis Vandalized for Second Time in Two Months

January 17, 2019, Germany

A window in the back of the Evangelical church of St. Simeon in Minden was smashed during the night of January 17th by unknown perpetrators.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

St. Jacques Church in Grenoble Destroyed by Fire

January 16, 2019, France

The church, whose frame was made of wood, was completely destroyed in a fire during the night of January 16th to 17th. When the firefighters arrived on site at 2:30 am, the church was already totally engulfed, and they could only prevent the flames from spreading to neighboring buildings. A hundred people had to be evacuated. The investigation indicated that the fire had started with a short circuit in the electrical system, however, an anarcho-libertarian blog post claimed responsibility.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Private Catholic School Sprayed with Graffiti

January 16, 2019, Spain

The exterior wall of the colegio de Santa Victoria of the Madres Escolapias, a private Catholic school, was spray painted with phrases such as "Death to Fascism," "School is Jail," as well as an 'anarcho-feminist' symbol.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Attempted Robbery and Fire in Two Bas-Rhin Churches

January 14, 2019, France

During the afternoon of January 14th, police were called to the church of Saint-Georges after the priest discovered that unknown individuals had tried to break into the donation trunks and attempted to force open the door to the sacristy where objects of worship are stored. An hour later, police and firefighters were called to a fire at the Sainte-Foy church nearby. Police opened an investigation to determine if the two events in Sélestat (Alsace) were connected.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

UK Court agrees to hear Challenge to Ban on Pro-Life Prayer Outside Abortion Center

January 11, 2019, United Kingdom

A British court has ruled that a pro-life activist may challenge a legal decision banning prayer and support for women in crisis pregnancies outside a Marie Stopes clinic.

Freedom of Association and Assembly Freedom of Expression

Molotov Cocktail Thrown at Church

January 10, 2019, Italy

"The true martyrs are in the sea" was painted on the wall of the church of San Rocco in Rovereto as the signature of the vandals who threw an incendiary device at the church, setting fire to the door. The attack appears to have been in response to a controversial nativity scene set up to "raise awareness of the tragedy of abortion which condemns children to a real martyrdom."

Hate Crime Vandalism (form of hate crime)

UK Deported Pakistani Christian Threatened by Islamic Extremists

January 9, 2019, United Kingdom

Asher Samson, a Pakistani Christian who fought to stay in the UK after allegedly being beaten and repeatedly threatened with execution by Islamic extremists in Pakistan, was deported back to Pakistan on January 9th. Samson, backed by thousands of Christians, attempted to persuade the UK government to allow him to stay after being threatened with execution by Islamic extremists in his home country.

Access to Justice and Legal Services

Two Telephone Bomb Threats against Vienna Cathedral in a Week

December 29, 2018, Austria

St. Stephen's Cathedral had to be evacuated twice in one week after anonymous telephone bomb threats by were received.

Hate Crime

Anarchist Group Targeted Church with Explosive Device in Athens

December 28, 2018, Greece

On December 28th, a police officer and the church caretaker were injured when a small explosive device went off outside the Church of St. Dionysios in the Kolonaki neighborhood of Athens shortly before the Divine Liturgy was scheduled to begin. On January 19th, the anarchist group "the Iconoclastic Sect" claimed responsibility for the attack.

Hate Crime

Burglaries in Two Churches in Freren Cause Property Damage of 9,000 Euros

December 28, 2018, Germany

Unknown perpetrators broke into a Catholic church and an Evangelical church in Freren, stealing small amounts of money from donation boxes, but causing about 9,000 euros in damage.

Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Monks Brutally Attacked during Robbery

December 27, 2018, Austria

Six monks were attacked, gagged, and bound during the course of a robbery at the monastery of Maria Immaculata in Vienna on December 27th. Several of the victims were seriously injured and police began a large-scale investigation.

Hate Crime Theft

Man Arrested for Destruction in Church

December 22, 2018, Germany

A 19-year-old man was arrested after causing severe damage to the Apostelkirche in Kaiserslautern on the night of December 22nd. The accused destroyed three glass windows and sprayed the contents of a fire extinguisher in the church. When the police attempted to calm the man, he threatened the officers.

Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Fire and Vandalism in Trier Abbey and Church

December 18, 2018, Germany

Intruders entered the Benedictine abbey of St. Matthias through a window during the night of December 18th and ransacked several rooms and the adjacent church, breaking sacred objects, overturning furniture, and setting fire to songbooks and other papers. Police estimated the damage to be in the thousands of euros.

Hate Crime Theft Vandalism (form of hate crime)

Strasbourg Christmas Market Shooting Declared Terrorism

December 11, 2018, France

Prosecutors announced that the attack on a busy Strasbourg Christmas market was an act of terrorism, committed by an Islamist extremist who had previously pledged alliance to ISIL. During the attack, the suspect shouted "Allahu Akbar." Security experts have said that the Christmas market was likely targeted both because it was crowded and its connection to Christianity and Christian symbolism. In response to the deadly attack, other Christmas markets across France implemented extra security measures.

Hate Crime

Shopping Mall Refused to Display Nativity but Advertised Christmas Market

December 5, 2018, United Kingdom

The Thistles Shopping Centre in Stirling, Scotland refused requests from the Legion of St. Mary's Association to display a nativity scene in the mall, saying they "pride themselves on religious neutrality." Despite this official position, the mall heavily advertised a "Christmas Market."

Exclusion (of individuals or ideas)