Vandals tag two California churches with anti-Catholic threat

St. Thomas More parish in Irvine, Calif., one of two parishes that were vandalized
St. Thomas More parish in Irvine, Calif., one of two parishes that were vandalized

.- One or more vandals recently spray painted a misspelled phrase “Kill the Cathlics” on two different Catholic churches in California.

The phrase appeared on St. Boniface Catholic Church in Anaheim and at St. Thomas More Parish in Irvine, about 20 miles away. Both incidents were discovered on the morning of Jan. 11.

Church officials are working with police to find who is responsible.

Sgt. Rick Martinez, public information officer for the Anaheim Police Department, told CNA there are still no suspects in the case.

Video surveillance from a camera at the church was not useful in revealing the identity or the sex of the person. The video footage shows a vehicle and a person at the church around 3 a.m. but police are not sure if the person in the video is connected to the vandalism.

Two other vandalism incidents were reported at the same time. A pet store and the wall of a local bank were both marked by derogatory comments containing ethnic animosity. Only the pet store graffiti had a reference to Catholics, and this reference was correctly spelled. The three acts of vandalism took place within an 11-mile radius of each other, with St. Boniface being in the middle of the two other crime scenes.

Martinez said he was not sure if the incident in Irvine, Calif. was related to the vandalism in Anaheim.

The California Catholic Daily says there have been several thefts and vandalism incidents at area Catholic churches in recent years. An ex-convict on parole has been arrested in connection with a series of “poor box” thefts at Holy Family parish in Glendale and at St. Finbar parish in Burbank.

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