December 31st, 2006


Graffiti hell at church

Nefarious News

Graffiti hell at church
Hit by "Satanic" scrawls

A majestic church on the upper East Side was hit twice in the past two days by a disturbed vandal who scrawled "Satan is God" across its doors and steps.

The messages, which appeared to be written with a black felt marker and were also found on two nearby buildings, infuriated parishioners of St. Jean Baptiste Catholic Church on E.76th St.

"This is terrible," fumed Patricia Lynch, 53, of Manhattan. "It's evil. I can't imagine people doing stuff like that."

The Rev. Anthony Schueller said he was shocked by the vandal's hateful writings, especially given the timing.

"It is religious intolerance and provocation," the priest said. "We are very much a Christian church, so to have anything said that is disparaging to Jesus Christ is very offensive."

Schueller said church workers discovered the first act of vandalism - the message "Satan is God" scrawled on a door in the church's vestibule - Friday afternoon.

The words were quickly painted over, but the vandal returned.

Several more inscriptions were found throughout the church grounds yesterday, including the phrases "Christ is a false God," on the rectory's steps, and "Satan is God," on the same vestibule door.

That message was also scrawled on a stone facing the church.

"It's disgusting," said a female parishioner in her 60s. "It must be the work of someone who's crazy."

A D'Agostino's supermarket next door and a swank apartment complex across the street were also defaced. Both buildings had the phrase "Satan is God" written in black across their facades.

Cops were searching for the vandals last night.

"It had to be the work of a deranged mind," said Father Bernard Camire.