Saturday, February 12, 2011

Two Sioux Falls Churches vandalized in same weekend

Church of the Holy Apostles (Episcopal) and Hilltop United Methodist Church, both on Bahnson Avenue, were broken into and vandalized during the first weekend of February.

From Holy Apostles' facebook page:

On the night of February 4th, our Church was broken into and severe damage was sustained. The toilet and sinks in the women's bathroom were completely smashed, as well as the urinal in the men's bathroom.

The fire extinguisher downstairs was ripped off the wall along with the bracket holding it in place. It was then taken into the kitchen and discharged inside cupboards, over plastic silverware, paper plates, napkins, cups etc. The refrigerator in the kitchen was opened and the fire extinguisher sprayed inside. In the maintenance room we found several boxes of soda and juice missing. Both fridges were left open.

There was attempted forced entry into the sunday school rooms, and the vestry. The doors were severely damaged and must be replaced.

In order to gain entry they smashed one of the windows in the basement, and to add to the shattered glass they took fluorescent tubes and shattered those on the tables.

Upstairs votives were overturned, and the handle to the office door was broken. The door also took heavy damage. The holy water stoop was broken and the bowl holding the water was shattered. That one crucifix that's a mirror was shattered. The glass frame of a poster near the inside of the door was shattered. Some of the powder from the fire extinguisher made it's way upstairs as well.

The Spirit newsletter from Hilltop says that the vandals went through every room of the facilities, using a pry bar to open locked doors. A number of computers and musical instruments were stolen, a can of paint was sloshed around in one room, and coffee was poured over the sound mixer board in the sanctuary.

Please pray for these congregations, and for change of heart for the vandals and thieves.

1 comment:

David Handy+ said...

How sad, and infuriating. What an outrage! Such sacrilege is something our persecuted brothers and sisters in other parts of the world are all too familiar with, but almost unheard of here in the U.S. That both an Episcopal and a Methodist church were vandalized shows that this kind of wanton destruction had nothing to do with a single congregation, or denomination, but rather it appears to reflect a deep-seated rage against Christian churches in general. Of course, maybe it will turn out that the perpetrator went wild in some drug-induced fit of insanity. At this point, we can only speculate, but the senseless vandalism remains horrifying.

The last I knew (a few years ago), Holy Apostles was a small, struggling congregation. This is a cruel blow for them. I hope other churches rally around them to help the parishioners repair the damage and to express solidarity with them.

I have very fond memories of frequently praying the Daily Office in the chapel there at Holy Apostles, back when Fr. Shoberg was the priest.