Vandalism to another church in Digby County has been reported.
The incident at the Riverside Baptist Church at 242 Fort Point Rd. in Weymouth took place the same weekend that a swastika and offensive words were drawn on the basement door of the Saint-Alphonse-de-Liguori church, 48 kilometres away.
The graffiti, which contained offensive language and a depiction of male genitalia, was found on the side of the Riverside church after the weekend of Feb. 8. It was scraped off and painted over immediately as there was a burial occurring later that week.
Deb Pyne-Young, chair of the Friends of the Riverside Church, visited the graveyard there on Feb. 19 and stopped at the gravesite of her father, who was buried in late December.
The plot was completely vacant of tribute flowers the family had placed there.
The memorial flowers, costing $400-$500, were mostly artificial. The family had hoped they would be there for the whole year.
“I’ve been putting (silk) flowers at that particular gravesite in memory of my mother for 28 years and have occasionally seen things go missing, often after a wicked, windy storm,” said Pyne-Young.
She adds that over the years she’s learned to stake or tie things down securely.
“It was a real shocker because we are still in the first part of grieving our loss,” she said.
“Somehow you wish that a cemetery and a church are considered sacred and public property for us all to enjoy.”
“Obviously some people don’t feel that way and sometimes people are desperate in their own needs and take what doesn’t belong to them.”
The Riverside Baptist Church vandalism was reported to the Digby RCMP detachment.
Security measures are being considered by the Friends of the Riverside Baptist Church and members are notifying others in the community of the incident to help raise awareness.
More about the Riverside Baptist Church
The Riverside Baptists Church was built in 1799 and was an active Baptist church in the community for almost 200 years.
Friends of the Riverside Baptist Church formed last year to maintain the structure for occasional events. Benefactors assist with improvements, most recently paving the driveway to the church.
An application has been filed by the Friends for heritage status.