Toronto, ON September 26, 2020 – On September 2, the League’s executive director Christian Elia was quoted in the LifeSiteNews article, “Statue of Virgin Mary decapitated in Toronto, police seek suspect caught on camera” regarding the act of vandalism at Our Lady of Lebanon, a church in Toronto.

Only 7 days later, Elia was quoted again in “Thieves break into Canadian cathedral, steal tabernacle, throw into canal” in reference to the act of theft, vandalism and Eucharistic desecration at the Cathedral of St. Catherine of Alexandria in St. Catharines, Ontario.

These two attacks against Catholic churches in Canada follow four other attacks since May 2020, including the damaging of eight statues at Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto in Sudbury and vandalism to statues at St. Patrick’s Parish in Markham, ON, Sacred Heart Church in Calgary, and the Basilica of Our Lady in Guelph, ON.

In 2019, after the knife attack of Fr. Claude Grou at St. Joseph’s Oratory in Montreal, the CCRL condemned all attacks at places of worship as having no place in Canada or in any civilized society. Attacks against church buildings and statues are by extension, attacks against those of us who worship inside. These are crimes of hatred against our faith and they are on the rise.

The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) is compiling a database of vandalism and other acts of violence directed at Catholic churches, hospitals, schools, and other places that are marked by Catholic identity.

We ask you to help us by contacting Olivia Torrone at or Christian Elia at to report incidents in your communities across Canada as we endeavour to compile a list of these crimes in collaboration with our Catholic dioceses and eparchies.

Alternatively, if you are not financially impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, we humbly ask that you send a donation to the CCRL by clicking here or by mailing a cheque to the CCRL at 2305 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON, M6S 1P1, or by calling the office at (416) 466-8244 or 1-844-722-CCRL.

Currently, there is no nationwide database in Canada that tracks and records attacks against our churches and other Catholic properties. Please help the CCRL fulfill this important role as we continue to fulfil our mandate as Canada’s only lay group committed to defending the Church from anti-Catholic defamation, and indeed anti-Catholic violence.

We appeal to any of you not financially impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, who may wish to accomplish more almsgiving by sending a donation to the CCRL by clicking here or by mailing a cheque to the CCRL at 2305 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON, M6S 1P1, or by calling the office at (416) 466-8244 or 1-844-722-CCRL.

About the CCRL

Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) ( assists in creating conditions within which Catholic teachings can be better understood, cooperates with other organizations in defending civil rights in Canada, and opposes defamation and discrimination against Catholics on the basis of their beliefs. The CCRL was founded in 1985 as an independent lay organization with a large nationwide membership base. The CCRL is a Canadian non-profit organization entirely supported by the generosity of its members.

To donate to the CCRL, please click here.

For further information:

Christian Domenic Elia, PhD
CCRL Executive Director