Grand Rapids church tagged by vandals

Grand Rapids
A photo of graffiti at the Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Grand Rapids. (Aug. 8, 2019)

A photo of graffiti at the Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Grand Rapids. (Aug. 8, 2019)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Catholic church on Grand Rapids’ West Side was vandalized early Thursday morning.

A series of symbols were spray-painted on three doors of Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish, according to a statement from Father Robert Sirico.

The symbols consisted of two pentagrams surrounded by circles on two of the doors and the numbers 666 above what appears to be an attempted upside-down cross on the other, the statement stated.

The statement noted the church is working with police, reaching out to possible witnesses and looking for any video recordings of the incident.

“As a pastor, I invite the perpetrators to come forward and allow me to have a conversation with them about this incident. In the meantime, we offer our forgiveness for this act and pledge our prayers for whoever did this and for their reconciliation to God,” Sirico said in a statement.

Sirico noted the local neighborhood association, South West Area Neighborhood, has been very supportive.

“Sacred Heart of Jesus has been a vital presence in this neighborhood since 1904, serving this community through aid to the poor, education and the administration of the sacraments. The parish and academy are presently undergoing a vibrant renewal with the growth of the school and parish and the expansion of our social service and evangelizing activities in the area. Our plan is to continue and to increase these efforts,” Sirico said in a prepared statement.

Anyone with information should contact Grand Rapids Police Department at 616.456.3982 or Silent Observer at 616.774.2345 or online at

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