Police Search For Suspects Responsible For Vandalizing Churches

TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — Two cases of vandalism have rocked the Baltimore-area Catholic community.

Weijia Jiang has more on the crimes and the search for the suspects.

A spokesman for the Archdiocese of Baltimore says what may be most alarming about the vandalism is that it happened twice, at two different locations, just two days apart.

Along Bosley Avenue in Towson, a holy symbol of the Immaculate Conception Church is gone.

“Anybody could see from any distance, was a big one,” said Sotirios Mitlineos.

Mitlineos is talking about a white cement statue of the Virgin Mary that usually stands on a stone pedestal.  Police say over the weekend, someone knocked it down.  The left hand broke off, the base was chipped and the spotlight that shines on her was disconnected.

“The Virgin Mary is the patron of the parish so there’s a special devotion and emphasis to that statue,” said Sean Caine, Archdiocese of Baltimore.

Caine says what’s even more disheartening is the fact that just two days before the statue was tarnished, one of St. Frances Assisi at St. Michael’s the Archangel in Overlea lost its head.

“It did look like it was intentional.  Someone meant to do mischief or vandalism.  This was no accident,” said Karl Stein.

Stein, who maintains the church grounds, says the statue was in a secluded flower bed.  Now he’s working to glue the pieces back together.

“I’m pretty shocked someone would do that to a religious statue,” Stein said.

Staff members have yet to find the Virgin Mary statue’s missing hand.  They plan to repair it as soon as possible.

Police say at this point, they don’t have any leads in either case.  They are trying to determine if they are linked in any way.

If you have information, please call police.



    • Kimberly Blackwell


  • petfriend

    Sad and disgusting. It takes a special sort of pathetic to destroy a piece of religious art

  • Dr. Phil

    As an atheist, I find this behavior disturbing. It’s not like the Christians try to push their values on our type, so we shouldn’t push our values on them.

    And especially not to the point of physical damage. Shame on you vandals.

  • dbag_I know it!

    Seeing as there is no God, this is just as deplorable as any other kind of vandalism, the fact that some imaginary figure is involved makes no difference.
    Besides it will give you all something to moan and pray about – see there’s an up-side to everything!

    • sheriff willie

      dbag_know it……..STFU, How can you be so sure there is no God? It say’s so right in the bible. Oh, the bible was printed & written by man eh?, Well how come God has outlasted every so called powerful leader, King Queen, Army, civilization in the universe since the beginning of mankind. Just a coincidence? I think not.

      • lawyered

        well if it’s in a book then it must be true.

    • Proud to be a Christian

      As a Christian and more importantly, a Catholic, who was quite distrubed by this story, I have one thing to say to you and anyone else who insists that my beliefs are wrong, dbag_I know it!- I’d rather believe in God, die and find out that I’m wrong, then NOT believe in God, die and find out that I’m wrong.” Catholics dont push our beliefs on others or demand that you believe our way or tell others who believe differently that their way of thinking is wrong, so why would you deliberately bash our way of thinking. To each their own, but as for me, I choose to accept God and will ALWAYS accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior!

  • willie man hanging

    This is disturbing for several reasons. Churches & different faiths should be off limits when it comes to vandalism. These punks & underachievers have so little respect for themselves how could they have it for another s property or self. When caught & I hope somebody rat’s them out or they start bragging about this that when their parents come forward & say they’re good boys & girls I want the judge to smash their faces. The kids probably come from good families (middle class) & enjoy the benefits of good schooling yet they had nothing better to do & were bored. The reason is chiefly , they are dissatisfied with their own self esteem. Hard juvenile labor & removing graffiti for one year should give them a idea of what life is about.

  • vitaliy

    Do you see god? He outlasted for no reason… It’s not like you can see god he is just there for people to feel good about dying

    • Danah

      Well you can’t see air either..look let’s not get on eachother about our beliefs. Religion is sort of like shoes. People shouldn’t be called out by the color shoes we’re wearing, nor can we get called out if we’re not even wearing them. It’s great that they have this faith, that I myself as an agnostic don’t completely understand, but we shouldn’t argue over someone’s beliefs, regardless of how much it annoys us. No disrespect.

      • Danah

        And I just realized how much better the shoe analogy sounded in my head..sigh.

  • willie man hanging

    Vitaly, Can you see love? No you can feel it, don’t deny it & God is love. Of all the gifts he has given us, Love is the greatest.

    • whatnow

      Well said.

    • Craig Venter

      You can indeed see love. The hormone Oxytocin is observed in the human brain when people experience “love” via EEG and neuro-imaging. Your assertion that something you can feel somehow points to supernatural origin is ridiculous. Too complicated for you? Maybe just stick with God then, and leave the science to the big boys.

      • Craig Venter

        I can’t figure out why you are defending your right to state your opinions when I never challenged it. I appreciate your judgement-day interrogation reenactment, and your wisdom and insight (albeit through poor grammar and spelling) has led me to some profound conclusions about my life. I think I’ll sell the yacht and spend the rest of my life devoted to ritual sacrifice and medieval superstition.

        I did not say that sight is the only way to acquire knowledge, just that the phenomenon that “willie man hanging” presumed to be invisible, was in fact, not. Also, observable evidence is the foundation for the scientific method, so while not limited to the eyes alone, science does depend wholly on what is observed.

      • Blah

        I’m sorry to the people that found this disrespectful, but I got a little laugh out of this.

      • Bernard Mc Kernan

        Mr. Venter, I take exception to your distasteful remarks. I never chastised you or anyone about there beliefs or non beliefs but merely stated my point of view. If you are one & the same Venter who is responsible for the Human genome discovery, what are you doing on here with us mere mortals. From your interviews, I imagined you were God’s almost equal. Go sailing on your temporary large boat & enjoy La Jolla Ca for it will all end for you soon & you will have to answer for your time here on earth, your contributions to mankind & did you ever help the “Little dogs” while you were running with the Big dogs in life & did you ever do it just for the money?

      • Linda G

        If science had always depended on only what could be seen, it would never have gotten very far.

      • whatnow

        A raspberry to you Dr. Ego.

  • Brian Crea

    Siners praying to false gods

  • vitaliy

    Well let me question you then… How is god love? Prove it

    • Bernard Mc Kernan

      Vitaly, Because he created you to the image & likeness of him. You fall into the category of St. Thomas the doubting one that has to see for themselves. A lifesaving surgical procedure you cannot see but you put your faith in the physican, true? In the end it is all God’s work working through others.

  • NewsReader

    “The Virgin Mary is the patron of the parish so there’s a special devotion and emphasis to that statue,” said Sean Caine, Archdiocese of Baltimore.

    I just like how they were devoted, praying, to a statue. I hope someone puts their idol back up soon.

    I hope they catch whoever is doing this before something worse happens.

    • Patrick Cook

      Catholics are not idol or statue worshippers. Common misconception, but a very large one.

    • Devin

      No they are not “praying” to a statue. The statue is a symbol and it is not an idol for we do not worship statues.
      The Catechism of the Council of Trent (1566) taught that idolatry is committed “by worshipping idols and images as God, or believing that they possess any divinity or virtue entitling them to our worship, by praying to, or reposing confidence in them” (374).

      “Idolatry is a perversion of man’s innate religious sense. An idolater is someone who ‘transfers his indestructible notion of God to anything other than God’” (CCC 2114).

  • Patrick Cook

    If this was a muslim mosque it would have been national and world-wide news. But it’s a catholic church, so it’s a 1-minute afterthought and will probably be forgotten in a few days. That’s the real devil’s work.

    • Blah

      Freaking right.

    • tessa

      Well said Patrick..

    • whatnow

      I agree 100%

  • Doug

    Young punks,no doubt.
    Find them,then fine them,
    and make them pay for the damage,
    even if they have to work it off at the church.

  • Sheila Flanigan

    Trash trashed

  • Insultor

    all yall m’thaf’ckass need to shut tha f’ck up hoess !

  • Barry

    if a man is blind… does the universe not exist for him ?

  • George Mouring

    You Know, I’ll bet a dollar to a dime, the Good Lord has already forgiven them.

  • Adamus

    It warms my heart to see the extirpation of the degraded Judea-Christian soul from our soil!

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