Activists attack Catholic church, spray paint abortion, anarchist graffiti on entrance doors

Saint John XXIII Catholic Church of For Collins, Colorado, seen after it as vandalized on May 7, 2022.
Saint John XXIII Catholic Church of For Collins, Colorado, seen after it as vandalized on May 7, 2022. | Screengrab: YouTube/CBS Denver

Police in Colorado are investigating another attack on a Catholic church after abortion slogans were spray-painted on the doors and glass panels broken at Saint John XXIII Catholic Church of Fort Collins. Authorities are investigating the vandalism as a “bias-motivated crime.”

According to a statement posted on Facebook by the Fort Collins Police Services, the church was vandalized around 1:15 a.m. Mountain time on May 7. Anarchist imagery and the slogan “my body, my choice” was spray-painted on entrance doors and glass was shattered.

“No damage was found inside the church, and the scene was processed for evidence," stated Fort Collins Police Services. "Due to the location and nature of the graffiti content, police are investigating this as a bias-motivated crime.”

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The statement also quoted Police Chief Jeff Swoboda, who advised those with knowledge of the perpetrator who committed the vandalism to come forward so the "suspect can be held accountable."

“Using fear and destruction to make a point is completely unacceptable. If you want to make your voice heard, do it by exchanging thoughts and ideas, not by committing criminal acts,” he said.

The vandalism occurred days after Politico published the contents of a leaked draft majority opinion that indicated the U.S. Supreme Court might overturn Roe v. Wade.

The document, written in February, pertains to the case of Dobbs v. Jackson, which centers on whether Mississippi can enforce a law banning most abortions after 15 weeks into a pregnancy.

Although the draft was not a final decision, many pro-choice activists are staging demonstrations across the country. 

Backlash to the leaked draft opinion has included multiple reports of vandalism targeting various pro-life churches and advocacy groups.

In Denton, Texas, a pregnancy resource center was attacked over the weekend, with an unknown party spray-painting messages like “not a clinic” and “forced birth is murder” on its building.

Last week, another Colorado church, Sacred Heart of Mary Church in Boulder, was vandalized with spray-painted messages that read, "Abortion Saves Lives" and "My Body My Choice."

The attack on Sacred Heart also included graffiti sprayed on some of the church's statues and windows were shattered by the vandals.

On Sunday, the office of the pro-life group Oregon Right to Life was set on fire when someone threw incendiary devices at the facility. According to the group, no one was in the office at the time.

Oregon Right to Life Executive Director Lois Anderson said in a statement that her organization was “thankful for the quick action of our first responders committed to maintaining a safe environment to operate in this community.”

“Understandably, our team is shaken up by this attack. We are committed to taking proper precautions to protect the safety of our staff as we move forward,” stated Anderson.  

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