A disturbing scene was recently found outside a church in Hayward where statues of children were found beheaded.

For 60 years those who attend St. Bede’s Catholic Church in Hayward have passed by a group of statues out front depicting Mary’s appearance to the children of Fatima.

A few weeks ago, a vandal defaced the statues, breaking off Mary’s hands and the heads of the three children and a lamb. It’s not the first time it’s happened.  The statues have been damaged three times in the last few years.

“How? What heart do you have that could do this?” said an outraged older woman who attends the church.

Whatever the motivation, the church’s pastor Fr. Seamus Farrell says this fits the very definition of a hate crime.

“It’s an attack on the faith of the people, the faith of all of us. It’s not simply a physical thing. It attacks our heart and mocks what we believe in,” said Farrell.

 The pastor says the statues can and will be repaired.

The pastor is considering whether the shrine has to be moved but says he would prefer to keep it open and visible as an inspiration to the public.

Full story at CBS San Francisco.