Attacks on church buildings will become more common, warns priest

Catholics will suffer more attacks on their local churches, a Tipperary-based priest has warned after Nazi swastikas were painted on a Catholic oratory in his parish. The warning follows three attacks on churches in the midlands as well as numerous other acts of vandalism on religious buildings and statues.

Fr Michael Toomey told the Irish Catholic newspaper that Christians in Ireland are “going to be open to more and more criticism and perhaps sadly attacks” on their churches.

He added that nowadays churches are viewed as public buildings without any sacred quality to them, which leads to people chewing gum and drinking coffee at Mass.

“It is actually the House of God and it’s not that people are being disrespectful deliberately, it’s just the society we live in they see it as just another public building perhaps,” he said, adding that “we need to bring ourselves back to the sacredness of it”.