Decatur, Alabama was the venue of an ugly scene that took place on October 2 inside the Annunciation of the Lord Catholic Church. After Communion at the 11:00 a.m. Mass, a man and a woman rushed the altar and turned over the century-old marble altar. The altar was thrown down the steps and smashed onto the floor.

Men from the congregation subdued the man and woman, as well as three of their accomplices. Rev. Joe Culotta told reporters that “They defiled what’s sacred to us.” The vandals also screamed at the faithful that Catholics worship idols, etc. “Children were scared,” said Father Culotta, “and people were crying.”

Adam Joseph Turgeon, 27, gave an interview from jail explaining his behavior by saying he was acting on a vision from God. His common-law wife, Lisa Marie Wagner, 26, was more explicit: “We are in the end of times. This is Armageddon, the end of all things. Basically, what we’re in right now is the appearance of the antichrist who we believe to be Pope Benedict [XVI].”

One church member, who happens also to be the mayor of Decatur, Don Kyle, said he believes that a lot of people “get a lot of misinformation about the Roman Catholic Church and other denominations.” Not an uncommon trait in parts of the South even to this day.

The five were arrested and charged with a felony. The culprits appear to be unrelated to any hate group.

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