Two churches near the town of Barrhead Alberta were intentionally set on fire Thursday night, according to the RCMP.
The RCMP said they are investigating a suspected arson after two Alberta churches were burned last night.
At about 7:48 p.m. last night, firefighters received a call that a fire had broken out at St. Aidan’s Church on Range Road 40 in Glenreagh. However, while the crew was still extinguishing the church, at 8:54 p.m. they received a call that another church was ablaze
About one hour’s drive from St. Aidan’s church, a second church, The Pioneer Memorial Church near Thunder Lake was set on fire.
According to the St. Albert Gazette, Barrhead Regional Fire Services (BRFS) chief Gary Hove said, “There is no question, both fires were arson.”
Hove’s continued to say that the Pioneer Memorial Church was set on fire from within, whereas St. Adian’s was set alight on the front steps.
Although some of the structure was spared for St. Aidan’s Church, the Pioneer Memorial Church was completely destroyed.
RCMP says “the fires were intentionally set”
According to reports, RCMP said after an initial investigation by the fire examiner “it was determined that the fires were intentionally set.”
The County of Barrhead Councillor Bill Laneoth commented on the burning of the Pioneer Memorial Church, saying that the arsonist took advantage of the fact that they always left the doors unlocked.
Both churches were constructed over 100 years ago, with St. Aidan’s Church constructed in 1913, and Pioneer Memorial Church built in 1912.
Conservatives respond to the attacks against on the Christian community
Many social media users have denounced the fires as an attack on Christianity. Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievere also made comments on X stating, “These are absolutely despicable attacks on the Christian community.”
He further added, “Police must find and arrest the criminals responsible for setting fire to these two churches.”
Liberals and NDP refuse to condemn the church burnings
In October, a motion calling for all political parties to condemn the nationwide attack on churches in Canada was denied by NDP and Liberal MPs, with one saying doing so might “trigger” Indigenous Canadians.