'Hate' group 'exorcises' church after gays take communion
An "informal exorcism" was performed by a group at the Cathedral of St Paul, Minneapolis in the US, earlier this month, but it caused serious damage to the Cathedral and is being described as "more profane than sacred".
Spirit Daily reports that police and Archdiocesan authorities said the ritualistic sprinkling of blessed oil and salt around the church and in donation boxes amounted to costly vandalism and possibly even a hate crime.
According to a local newspaper, the damage was discovered after midday Mass on 7 November, and after words were exchanged between members of the Rainbow Sash Alliance, the gay rights group, and the opposing group, Catholics Against Sacrilege.
"Police speculate that the damage could have been done anytime between late Saturday afternoon and during the Mass itself," reported the newspaper, explaining that the groups were at odds over homosexuals participating in Communion.
It is estimated the cost to clean up the damage will amount to thousands of dollars, involving crews working three days to remove the oil and salt and cleaning the doors, steps and boxes.
Group 'exorcised' church after gays took communion in Minneapolis (Spirit Daily)
Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis | Cathedral of St Paul
Police Investigating Informal Exorcism At St. Paul Cathedral (WCCO 24/11/04)
St. Paul cathedral damaged in apparent anti-gay exorcism (startribune.com 24/11/04)
`Exorcism' at St. Paul cathedral investigated as hate crime (Pioneer Press 24/11/04)
25 Nov 2004