Violence Against Christian Churches Doubled After Supreme Court Overturned Roe

National   |   Hannah Hiester   |   Feb 22, 2024   |   11:14AM   |   Washington, DC

Acts of violence against churches in the United States more than doubled between 2022 and 2023, according to a recent report.

Christian nonprofit Family Research Council (FRC) released its updated Hostility Against Churches report earlier this month, which stated that attacks against churches in the U.S. have not decreased in the slightest.

“In 2023, Family Research Council identified 436 incidents—more than double the number identified in 2022 and more than eight times the number identified in 2018,” FRC stated in the report. “These findings suggest that hostility against U.S. churches is not only on the rise but also accelerating.”

As CatholicVote reported, attacks on Catholic churches in the U.S. constitute a significant number of the acts of violence detailed in FRC’s report. Since May 2020, almost 400 attacks on Catholic churches have been tracked across the nation.

FRC reported that the reasons behind attacking U.S. churches remain largely unknown, but added that the incidents are “taking place in a context in which American culture appears increasingly hostile to Christianity.”

Between 2018 and 2023, FRC identified over 959 acts of hostility against U.S. churches. The acts included vandalism, arson attacks or attempts, gun-related incidents, bomb threats, and other incidents.

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FRC also found that the acts of hostility occurred in every state and in Washington, D.C., with more incidents generally reported in states with higher populations. In the last 6 years, California had 91 incidents, while smaller states like Delaware, New Hampshire, and Vermont only reported one incident apiece.

FRC President Tony Perkins said that the government’s “indifference” toward religious hostility is to blame for increased attacks on churches.

“There is a common connection between the growing religious persecution abroad and the rapidly increasing hostility toward churches here at home: our government’s policies,” he said.

“The indifference abroad to the fundamental freedom of religion is rivaled only by the increasing antagonism toward the moral absolutes taught by Bible-believing churches here in the U.S., which is fomenting this environment of hostility toward churches.”

Arielle Del Turco, director of the Center for Religious Freedom at FRC and author of the report, said that the acts of hostility “send the message that churches are not wanted in the community or respected in general.”

“Our culture is demonstrating a growing disdain for Christianity and core Christian beliefs, and acts of hostility against churches could be a physical manifestation of that,” she said. “Regardless of the motivations of these crimes, everyone should treat churches and all houses of worship with respect and affirm the importance of religious freedom for all Americans.”

LifeNews Note: Hannah Hiester writes for CatholicVote, where this column originally appeared.