A church in Spokane’s West Central neighborhood reported it was the target of extensive vandalism Monday night or Tuesday morning.
Liv Larson, the pastor at Salem Lutheran Church, described the vandalism as “pretty random damage done, probably by someone on a controlled substance. None of it seems hateful or spiteful or even really directed at Salem.”
Blue marker doodles covered walls and windows, candle wax and wine was spilled on the floor and, in one room, someone urinated and defecated in a trash can, Larson said.
She suspects the culprit, or culprits, simply wandered past the church at 1428 W. Broadway Ave. and “tried a door and got in” before wreaking havoc. She said a number of valuable objects, such as the organ and piano, were not damaged, and the only thing stolen was a marble baptismal font.
Larson said she reported the incident to police and hopes insurance will cover the damage.
Larson said she’s happy that at least the vandalism did not appear to be motivated by hate, given other recent crimes targeting specific groups of people.
On the night of May 4, vandals broke into the Salish School of Spokane and scrawled racial slurs on the walls. Last week, the words “Get out” were spray-painted on the home of a refugee family on the South Side. And in late April, anti-Semitic graffiti praising Adolf Hitler was found on a door of the downtown Community Building.
Salem Lutheran Church is adorned with signs reading “All are welcome,” “Black lives matter” and “Welcoming immigrants since 1888.”
The church was asking members to participate in a Wednesday morning cleanup.