Vandalism to old Kamloops Catholic church 'deeply disturbing': Tk'emlups Chief | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vandalism to old Kamloops Catholic church 'deeply disturbing': Tk'emlups Chief

Graffiti remains on the walls after washing at St. Joseph's Church on Tk'emlups land, June 1, 2021.
June 01, 2021 - 12:26 PM

Graffiti on a century-old Catholic church was washed, but the remnants of spray paint can still be seen.

In a news release, Kukpi7 Rosanne Casimir said the band was "deeply disturbed" to learn St. Joseph's church was vandalized.

"The church was built from the ground up," she said on May 31. "We understand the many emotions connected to a Roman Catholic run residential school."

The word "evicted" on the wall and an "X" on the front door are still visible on the morning of June 1.

In the release, she said the band respects the choices that Tk?emlúps te Secwépemc ancestors made over 100 years ago to build the church.

The graffiti was found on the church after a weekend of mourning and ceremony to honour the children buried near the former Kamloops residential school and survivors who attended it.

The school was run by the Roman Catholic church from 1890 to 1969.

An "X" can still be seen on the entrance to the century-old Catholic church on June 1, 2021.

A security guard now patrols the area to ensure the perpetrators don't return to the St. Joseph's Church heritage site.

According to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Kamloops, it was built in the late 19th Century and is the oldest church in Kamloops.

It sits at 200 Chilcotin Road on Tk'emlups land.

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