HALIFAX — A Halifax pastor says he felt "violated" after the front doors of his parish were vandalized.
St. Agnes Church was one of two Catholic churches in the Nova Scotia capital that were hit with obscene graffiti overnight on Saturday.
Father Paul Morris was preparing to deliver the 10:30 a.m. Easter mass when a concerned parishioner alerted him to graffiti on the front doors of the building.
Someone had spray-painted obscene words and drawings on the building, where Morris was expecting nearly a thousand people to attend the service.
I felt sad, I felt angry, my head was spinning.Father Paul Morris
"When you're the victim of crime, there is a great feeling of being violated. And that's how I felt. I felt sad, I felt angry, my head was spinning," he said in an interview Sunday.
"I think it's atrocious. It's appalling that someone would desecrate any house of worship."
Morris said he contacted the police a few minutes before the mass began.
He said the service went as well as could be expected. It was well attended, and he briefly addressed the vandalism in his opening words.
"I said, 'I want everyone to see what was done to us. So take a look when you leave,'" he said, adding that he could forgive the person who did this if they were brought to justice.
Saint Benedict Church in the suburb of Clayton Park was also vandalized overnight.
Someone said to me this week that Christians were not persecuted in our country. This morning we woke up to this. pic.twitter.com/abt64oO0Ql— Fr. James Mallon (@FJMallon) April 1, 2018
Father James Mallon of Saint Benedict tweeted a picture of the graffiti with the caption: "Someone said to me this week that Christians were not persecuted in our country. This morning we woke up to this."
Halifax police believe the two incidents are related.
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