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Catholic statue beheaded, devotional candles destroyed at church

The St. Jude statue stood in the courtyard of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish.

DENVER — Denver Archbishop Samuel Aquila said he's praying for the conversion of those who beheaded the statue of St. Jude in the courtyard of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish earlier this month.

Devotional candles at an outdoor prayer shrine were also destroyed.

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Aquila called the attack extremely disturbing.

“It is troubling to see the increased reports of vandalism at Catholic churches this summer, both across the county and in our archdiocese," said Aquila. "And it is extremely disturbing to see a statue at one of our local parishes desecrated in this manner."

He added the archdiocese has begun a "Rosary Crusade" to pray for the conversion of those who carry out the acts of desecration against churches, statues and religious symbols.

The church said it is unsure of the motive behind the act and if it was a deliberate attack against the church or just a random act of vandalism.

The Catholic parish mostly serves Denver's Hispanic community.

The church reported an increase in reports of vandalism this summer, both across the country and in Colorado.

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