Bibles burned, hymnbooks slashed in Bradford attack

Yobs in West Yorkshire burned Bibles and slashed hymnbooks in an attack against a Methodist church in a village near Bradford.

The distressing attack on Birkenshaw Methodist Church was discovered earlier this week when an art group went to the church to hold their meeting.

Upon arriving they found that a large crucifix had been ripped from an interior wall, the chairs had been slashed, and wires leading to the church’s speakers and piano keyboard had been cut.


Revd Graham Edwards, the church’s minister, said: “Everyone is very upset and it is very sad to go to the effort of refurbishing the whole place to find somebody will break in and, for what seems like no reason at all, will destroy and ruin things.

“What is upsetting people is the pointlessness of it all.”

He added: “You always wonder what things are about I suppose but I don’t think we are too concerned by that. It upsets you but we are not going to dwell on these things.”


The church, which has 61 members, was refurbished just two years ago and Revd Edwards estimates that the attack could cost around £2,000.

The police are continuing to make inquiries into the incident, but a police spokesman has confirmed that nothing was stolen during the break-in.

The incident occurred between the end of the church’s Sunday evening service and the Monday afternoon when the art group arrived at the church.


In March a 19th century Cambridgeshire church was gutted by a massive fire, reportedly started when yobs set Bibles and prayer books alight.

The horrific fire in Westry, near March, left the village church in tatters with only the external brickwork remaining.

Church caretaker John Arnold, 74, arrived at the church to see a cross and a Bible engulfed in flames.


He said: “When I opened the door I first thought it was dust coming in the windows and then I realised it was smoke.

“I had thought it was strange because the door was unlocked.

“The smoke was really thick and I could see the Bible was burning and the wooden cross that we had made.”

Church rector, the Revd Anthony Chandler, described the scene as “heartbreaking”.

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