Nazi slur painted on church wall

| July 2, 2010

G20 Summit protest may have reached as far as Red Deer where graffiti comparing Prime Minister Stephen Harper to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler defaced St. Mary’s Catholic Church.

Late Sunday or early Monday morning, someone used black spray paint to print — “Stephen Harper is Hitler reincarnated. What is next? Genocide. Civil war in Canada.”

The graffiti, that included a swastika, ran about 11 metres along the front of the brick church designed by architectural legend Douglas Cardinal.

The paint was being removed on Wednesday.

Lorraine Turchansky, spokesperson with the Catholic Archdiocese of Edmonton, said the vandalism was a cowardly way to send a message.

“It’s very sad and disheartening when something like that happens. Certainly the people at St. Mary’s parish don’t deserve that,” Turchansky said on Wednesday.

Built in 1968, with its billowing walls, St. Mary’s is one of Cardinal’s early commissions, and is still considered one of his masterpieces.

“It’s iconic. Most people really love the building even if they’re not a member of the parish,” Turchansky said.

In 1983, Cardinal was awarded the commission to design the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Hull, Que.

RCMP Cpl. Kathe DeHeer said police are investigating the church vandalism, along with similar graffiti at a school near the 39th Street church.

“Both had political overtones, whether they’re related to G20 or whether someone took the opportunity to write something derogatory is hard to say. It very well could be random vandalism,” DeHeer said.

Anyone with information on the crimes is asked to call Red Deer City RCMP at 403.343.5575, Central Alberta Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477, or submit a tip online at

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Category: Church Security

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