The Junipero Serra statue at the Serra Retreat Center in Malibu was discovered to be vandalized the night of Aug. 6.

The statue was smashed and broken in half with the priest’s head laying at the base of the statue.

Serra is an 18th century Franciscan Friar who led the development of the California mission system during the period of Spanish colonization. In 2015, the Friar was controversially canonized by the Roman Catholic Church

Junipero Serra statue in downtown Los Angeles was similarly brought to the ground by activists on June 20, who reasoned that the statue represented social controversies including mass incarceration and enslavement.

Residents of the Serra Retreat neighborhood were disappointed and disturbed with the vandalism. Resident Anne Payne cited the crime in this “place of peace” to be “malicious, especially knowing that someone had planned and sneaked in.”

This was not the first time the $10,000 statue had been damaged. On July 25, someone vandalized the statue, breaking fingers off to leave only the middle finger intact.

The above comes from an Aug. 6 story in the Malibu Times.


Mary statue in Citrus Heights repaired

After its statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary was beheaded, a California parish asked Catholics to pray for the vandal who desecrated the statue, along with another monument at the parish.

“It is heartbreaking to see desecration to an image of Our Blessed Lady, and distressing to try to comprehend why someone would do this. While we have no way of knowing the motive for this shameful action, we do know this: it makes no statement, advances no cause, and uplifts no one. It merely creates more sorrow in a time already full of it,” Father Enrique Alvarez, pastor of Holy Family Parish in Citrus Heights, California, said in a statement this week.

The statue was beheaded late Monday evening. A statue of the Ten Commandments, placed at the parish “in dedication to all those who have lost their life through abortion,” was grafittied with a swastika.

“I ask our Holy Family community to join me in prayer for the person or persons who would do this and who would seek to add to the sorrows in our world and bring pain to those who have done them no harm. Actions of this sort are likely born of inner pain for which we must have compassion,” Alvarez said.

Within one day of the vandalism, the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary was repaired and and the other statue was cleaned.

The vandalism came amid an ongoing spate of destructive acts at Catholic parishes across the country. In recent weeks, statues of Mary, and of other saints, have been destroyed on parish properties in numerous states, and churches in California, Massachusetts, and Florida have been the location of suspected arson. Beginning in June, public statues of saints, especially statues of St. Junipero Serra in California, have been torn down or destroyed by protestors and rioters….

The above comes from an Aug. 20 story on Catholic News Agency.