France: Police Arrest Man for Desecrating Church with Islamic Qur’an Verses

The U.S. Catholic bishops expressed their dismay over the 100th act of anti-Catholic vandalism since they began tracking the phenomenon last May.
Peter Macdiarmid/Getty

Police in the French city of Toulouse have arrested a man in connection to a church desecration in which verses from the Islamic Qur’an were written on the walls of the church.

The church vandalism is said to have taken place several months prior in a church just north of Toulouse bordering on the Borderouge district. The suspect, a 25-year-old male, is believed to have taken part in the vandalism, France Bleu reports.

Around a dozen officers from the elite tactical National Gendarmerie Intervention Group (GIGN) are said to have raided the home of the 25-year-old on Monday, forcing themselves into the man’s apartment by knocking down the door. The suspect did not resist arrest and was placed into custody.

The arrest comes just under a year after another church in Toulouse, the Notre-Dame du Taur, was vandalised by an individual who wrote “Allah u Akbar” on the doors of the building.

Protège ton église (Protect Your Church), a group that aims to protect churches and holy sites in France, wrote: “This desecration is reminiscent of the place of Islamism in the acts of Christianophobes and the danger that this phenomenon represents for our churches and Christians around the world. France remembers Father Hamel murdered with this cry.”

Jihadists murdered Father Jaques Hamel in his own church in July 2016. The Catholic priest was later declared a martyr by Pope Francis.

Church attacks in France have become a major issue in the last several years, with a report from March of last year claiming that there are as many as three attacks on churches or graveyards per day on average, with a total of 1,063  cases in 2018.

While some attacks have been in connection with robberies, others have less clear motives, such as an attack in November that saw human faeces smeared into prayer books at a church in the commune of Tarbes.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.