Around 2:15 a.m. on Sunday, Montgomery County firefighters responding to a call found several church pews on fire at Saint Jane Frances de Chantal Catholic Church, located on Old Georgetown Road in Bethesda near the Capital Beltway.
Addressing the congregation and those watching the mass’s livestream, Rev. Samuel Giese shared news of the vandalism.
“Last night our church was vandalized,” Giese said. “People broke in. They overturned statues. They tore down the Stations of the Cross. They desecrated the tabernacle and tried to set the church on fire.”
Giese said he believed the vandalism was in response to the Catholic Church’s anti-abortion stance. He alluded to the country’s political divide on abortion, which has deepened since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, the landmark case that had legalized abortion almost 50 years ago.
“I believe that this is because of the church’s stand on the issue of life: when it begins, and that it should be protected. And that this is one of the manifestations of the deep divisions right now within our country. That there are those who believe that we do not have even the right to practice our faith,” Giese said.
To read the entire article from WTOP, go here.
Note: That as of this posting, there was no press release (July 11th at apx. 3:30pm) from the Archdiocese of Washington regarding this matter on their website.