The head of the Saint Lucia Catholic Church, Archbishop Robert Rivas, has asserted that places of worship around the world are becoming soft targets for violence as evidenced in the recent terrorist attack on a Catholic church in France.

An 86 year old Priest was stabbed in the chest and had his throat slit by two men who stormed a church in Northern France.

The attackers were reported to be ISIS operatives.

Archbishop Rivas recalled that Saint Lucia had experienced an attack on the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception on New Year’s Eve 2000.


Two men professing to be Rastafarians had poured flammable liquid on worshipers, setting some alight and beating them with clubs.

A Catholic Priest and a Nun died following the attack while several others were scarred for life.


“This is the nature of violence and hatred and bitterness in people’s hearts,” Archbishop Robert Rivas said in an interview today.

He observed that in Jamaica Priests have been killed, while in Trinidad and Tobago members of the clergy have been tied up and battered.

Rivas said:

“Where is the respect? Respect for God, human life, human dignity, people who are doing God’s work?”


He explained that in the past there was an understanding that one does not touch God’s anointed.

“You wouldn’t even think of going into a church to steal, but nowadays people are doing what they want and we have lost that sense of the sacred, the holy,” the Archbishop sadly pointed out.



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