Monday, July 8, 2013

Pilgrims UCC Church in Maple Grove, MN, Vandalized Over Gay Rights

Pilgrims United Church of Christ of Maple Grove, MN, was vandalized this past weekend over its support for LGBT rights and gay marriage rights. This is the third incident of anti-gay vandalism within the past two months:
Pilgrims United Church of Christ was the apparent victim of vandalism... and it’s believed the motive is that the church is supportive of same-sex marriage. Maple Grove Police said church-goers spotted graffiti on the building, handcuffs on the front door and that the building had been egged again when they arrived for services on Sunday. There was also the message “Gay pride, No.” on the exterior walls of the building.

Back in June, police said someone threw eggs at the windows and wrote “church of Sodom and Gomorrah” on the exterior walls. Authorities said more vandalism took place just a day later.

Now, the Maple Grove Police Department is trying to figure out who is responsible. Authorities said it’s clear that there’s a motive since the church supports same-sex marriage, but wouldn’t go so far as to call it a hate crime. “We are investigating this crime as a bias motivated crime. A hate crime is not necessarily a word we use in law enforcement, but we are investigating this as a bias motivated crime,” said Maple Grove Police Captain Keith Terlinden.
A church member in the comments section of this article indicates that there was one other act of vandalism against Pilgrims UCC that was not reported to the police. Most of the other commenters are debating whether or not Pilgrims UCC is really a Christian church or not.

I'm not saying it had never happened, but can you remember a situation where a church of vandalized for opposing LGBT rights or same-sex marriage? I can't. Protests, yes. Vandalism, no. I guess the religious liberties that culture warriors were fretting about before Minnesota voted marriage equality into law are less important when it comes to the religious liberties of Christians who support all of Minnesota's families, including the gay and lesbian families.

Pilgrims UCC is an Open & Affirming, Just Peace, and Earthwise Church.


Katy Anders said...

It's an amazing time to be a gay Christian.

Jon said...

LOL! I don't know why, but that last comment made me chuckle, Katy! :)

Anonymous said...

I'm happy to report that the vandal has been caught!

Jon said...

I've been (very slowly) writing a follow-up to this story all afternoon. Too many appointments!

Has he been caught? Or caught on video? I haven't seen where he's been actually caught, but would love to know more details if they've actually charged or arrested someone in relationship to this case.