France tops list of hate crimes against Christians

A fire at St Sulpice Church in Paris in 2019 is believed to have been deliberately lit (CNS/Instagram, agneswebste via Reuters)

The Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe has documented more than 500 hate crimes against Christians on the continent in 2019. Source: CNA.

Incidents included attacks against Catholic priests, arson attacks on Catholic churches, the destruction of images of the Virgin Mary, vandalism of a pregnancy counselling centre and the theft of consecrated Eucharistic hosts from tabernacles.

France had the most hate crimes against Christians, with 144 incidents in 2019, the majority occurring against Catholic churches. The OSCE also reported 81 incidents in Germany, 75 in Spain, and 70 in Italy.

In total, there were 595 incidents against Christians documented by OSCE. Of these, 459 were attacks against property and 80 were violent attacks against people. Nearly a quarter of the data on Christians was reported directly by the Holy See.

The information was published on Monday to mark the International Day for Tolerance. The OSCE also released data on hate crimes driven by anti-Semitism, racism, bias based on sexual orientation and other categories.


More than 500 hate crimes against Europe’s Christians recorded in 2019 (By Courtney Mares, CNA

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