The United States has witnessed a significant increase in violence against churches, with 69 incidents reported during the first quarter of 2023. The Family Research Council (FRC), an advocacy group with conservative leanings, has published a report titled "Hostility Against Churches Is on the Rise in the United States," which draws attention to this rise in attacks. According to the report, 420 incidents were reported by 397 churches across the country between 2018 and 2022. These trends suggest that Christianity is being targeted, with some attributing blame to the left.
Churches Set To Experience Record-High Level Of Attacks In 2023: REPORT https://t.co/RIBqQrVnQn
— US Burning (@UsBurning) April 11, 2023
According to the FRC report, the attacks against churches are politically motivated and have targeted pro-life memorials as well as resulted in spray-painted messages such as "TRANS PWR" in response to state legislation surrounding gender transition medical procedures. The report further notes that "secularism" has played a role in diminishing respect for religion, which has contributed to the increase in violence.
The concerning pattern of violence against churches has affected 29 states, with a total of 69 incidents reported, including 53 acts of vandalism, ten cases of arson, three incidents involving gun threats, three bomb threats, and two assaults. North Carolina had the highest number of incidents at seven, followed by Ohio and Tennessee with five each, and Florida, Missouri, and Pennsylvania with four incidents each.
Arielle Del Turco, who serves as the Director of the Center for Religious Liberty at FRC, asserts that the recent uptick in church violence necessitates that religious institutions take measures to safeguard their members. Del Turco also argues that maintaining cultural support is critical to preserving religious freedom, which can be accomplished by publicly practicing one's faith and not succumbing to fear even in the wake of targeted tragedies such as the Covenant School shooting.
It is evident that additional efforts are required to preserve religious freedoms, and it is imperative for conservatives to resist those who aim to undermine them. We must take measures to secure our religious institutions and ensure that they remain sanctuaries for worshippers.