All cases

Break-in and theft in Church in Speyer

September 28, 2022, Germany

Between September 25 and 28, unknown perpetrators forced open an entrance door of the Dreifaltigkeitskirche (Holy Trinity Church) and thus entered the church building. Inside, cupboards and donation boxes were broken open and an unknown amount of money was stolen from them. The damage to property cannot yet be quantified, reports the local police.

Theft in Church in Montecosaro

September 27, 2022, Italy

On September 27, a number of brass chalices and two big screens were stolen from the basilica of the Santissima Annunziata di Firenze in Montecosaro. The chalices are sacred objects that are used to celebrate Mass.

Church Wall in Zaragoza Defaced with Insulting Graffiti

September 27, 2022, Spain

It was reported on the 27. September that the Municipal Committee of the Aragonese Party (PAR) criticised the vandalism caused to the exterior of the church of La Magdalena in Zaragoza. The exterior wall of the church is covered in graffiti that includes offensive expressions or insults against the clergy.

Belarus: Pentecostal Church Evicted and Worship Banned by Police

September 25, 2022, Belarus

Belarusian Police banned New Life Church from meeting for dominical worship in the parking lot of the church building from which they had been forcibly evicted. On 25 September officials ordered the Belarussian Police to ban the Sunday meeting and detain anyone who did not leave, while pastors Vyacheslav Goncharenko and Antoni Bokun were detained and fined for having organized the 18 September 2022 service.

16th Century Chalice Stolen from St Andrew's Church in Cambridge

September 25, 2022, United Kingdom

Sometime between September 25 and October 1 a 16th-century chalice, engraved with the words “For the Town of Kingston” was stolen from a safe of the All Saints and St Andrew Church in Kingston, Cambridgeshire. A £1,000 reward for information leading to recovery is being offered as the chalice is worth in excess of £10,000 apart from its spiritual value for the community.

Open Letter to Ursula Von Der Leyen: EU Special Envoy of Religious Freedom Position Still Vacant

September 23, 2022, European Institutions (EU, ECHR, et.al.)

The position of an EU Envoy of Religious Freedom is still vacant. The position was left vacant for 2 years, until it was briefly held by Christos Stylianides from May to September 2021. He left the role, as he was offered a different position only 5 months later. In 2022, it was communicated that Mario Mauro would be confirmed as a new Envoy, but there has not been any further confirmation. On the 23. September 2022, Marco Gombacci wrote an Open Letter to Ursula von der Leyen questioning why the EU is not making the safeguarding of Religious Freedom a priority, given its "indispensable value for defining democracies and states under the rule of law".

Parishioners of the Cathedral of Pskov, Russia, evacuated during service because of a bomb threat

September 23, 2022, Russia

On September 23, during a solemn mass with the ostension and adoration of the relics of St. Sergei of Radonezh, the Pskov cathedral had to be evacuated after a bomb threat. The Metropolitan Tikhon of Pskov announced the evacuation after his homily and after the faithful kissed the relics as it had been reported that the cathedral had been mined. "Dear brothers and sisters, did everyone lay hands on the relics? Well done. We have been informed that the cathedral has been mined. Quietly, everyone comes out... I bless you with the cross, go quickly with God, everyone come out, the Emergencies Ministry is there," said Metropolitan Tikhon.

A man disrupts the mass and intimidates the faithful in Italy

September 23, 2022, Italy

A man of foreign origin, and known to the local police for numerous acts of theft, was arrested on September 23 at the Church of St. Michael the Archangel in the Madonna Alta district of Perugia, while threatening the faithful and shouting in the place of worship, during mass. The man is also known for robberies against a church in the city. He has been referred to the police.

Desecration and vandalism of a chapel of the Virgin in Italy

September 22, 2022, Italy

During the night of September 22-23, individuals broke the bottom of the door of the Chapel of the Virgin, in Via della Riotta in Novara, in the Italian Piedmont, and removed the Stations of the Cross from the wall to throw the stations into the garden of the chapel. The parish priest, Fr. Massimo Volpatti, filed a complaint and reported the incident on social networks - this small 17th-century chapel has no video surveillance. He also celebrated a mass of reparation and strongly denounced "a profane, serious, sacrilegious act" in the local press.

Two Teenagers Smear The Walls and Door of a Historic Chapel in Konz

September 22, 2022, Germany

Two 13-year-olds vandalised and spray-painted a Chapel in Jeuchental, near Konz, on the 20th of September. As quoted by the police "The chapel had been heavily damaged with graffiti on three sides and on the entrance door. Facebook users raised their concerns and commented on the situation. The police has identified the vandals.