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Last Updated: Friday, 9 September 2005, 18:24 GMT 19:24 UK
Two churches daubed with graffiti
Two churches were daubed with sectarian graffiti
Two Catholic churches in Banbridge, County Down, have been daubed with sectarian graffiti.

St Patrick's Church, Dromore Street, and St Teresa's Church, Scarva Road, in were both targeted in overnight attacks.

Council workers have spent the morning attempting to clean off the slogans. It is understood both churches were targeted by hoax bombers last year.

Superintendent Mervyn Waddell said he was "disgusted" at the attack.

"Families have enjoyed good community relations for years and we will not let a small minority ruin that," he said.

"Those responsible have not only caused unnecessary upset to the local clergy and parishioners, but have also shown disrespect for their own community."

Parish priest Canon Liam Stevenson said they had prayed that there would be no retaliation for the attack.

"We also prayed for the perpetrators because they must be having difficulties in their lives at the moment when they think this is the proper thing to do," he said.

Church of Ireland minister Reverend Elizabeth Hanna paid a visit to St Patrick's Church after hearing of the attack.

"I heard the news at lunchtime and simply wanted to come and pray here because this shouldn't happen," she said.

"The churches here, the people and the ministers, we get on so well and I suppose it is like solidarity, I wanted to be identified with all that is good."


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