Church in Renton vandalized with smashed windows and spray painted anti-Catholic messages

RENTON, Wash. — Another church in the area has been vandalized following the Supreme Court’s ruling on abortion rights, overturning Roe v. Wade.

Leadership with St. Anthony’s Catholic Parish says several people spray-painted abortion-rights and anti-Catholic messages in the late hours of Friday and early Saturday morning.

Father Tom Belleque says many churches in the area were somewhat expecting this sort of response after the ruling. He says they checked their security cameras as well.

“It’s just sad, the responses to destroy property,” Belleque said.

Belleque says they believe several people were responsible for the vandalism.

“There was some graffiti on the walls that said pro-abortion and anti-Catholic things. And they broke about four sections of stain glass windows,” Belleque said.

“And sacred space. You know this is a house of prayer. And you know that’s what we want it to be,” Belleque said.

St. Louise Parish in Bellevue was also vandalized on Tuesday. The person responsible has been caught and could face charges of assault in the 4th degree and a hate crime offense.

“We all have the right to free speech. Marching and stating our beliefs. But there’s a line that can be crossed pretty easily. And it’s never OK to damage people’s property, or injure somebody, or attack somebody. No matter what your beliefs are,” Captain Darryl McKinney with Bellevue Police said.

Belleque says they want to practice forgiveness for those responsible.

“We are going to let this moment bring out not the worst in us but to bring out the best in us.”

And it’s a model he hopes can bring people together.

“But as I shared with our community, and what we’ve been trying really hard here at St. Anthony’s to live is, we are trying to model our life lives after Christ,” Belleque said.

Members of the church tell KIRO7 off-camera that not all of them supported the court’s decision. KIRO7 has also reached out to Renton Police for more details and is still waiting to hear back.