Vandal paints 'God is Dead' on an Idaho Mormon chapel, police say

By Heather Kennison

The Twin Falls Times-News

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TWIN FALLS — Someone has vandalized The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints chapel on Harrison Street in Twin Falls, painted with the words “God is Dead,” reports the Twin Falls Times-News.

Church staff reported the vandalism to police Tuesday, said Ray Parrish, spokesman for the LDS church in Twin Falls. The church’s response to the words, however, was simply to get them taken down as quickly as possible.

“It’s sad that there are people in this valley that have nothing better to do,” Parrish said. “These things happen occasionally. The church’s attitude is the less publicity we give these people, the less likely the are to repeat it.”

He called the vandalism an act of someone who has “no focus in life.”

The phrase “God is Dead” has been widely quoted from works written by German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche.

Several LDS churches have been vandalized in the Magic Valley over the past 10 years, Parrish said. But they aren’t the only ones. The Islamic Center of Twin Falls and the Hagerman Christian Center have also reported incidents of vandalism.

In October, police began investigating what the called a “hate crime” at the Islamic Center of Twin Falls. Someone had set up a 4-foot cross draped in bacon and pig parts in the center’s parking lot. No arrests have been made relating to the incident.

But police have begun reaching out to churches by providing them with trainings on how to respond to an active shooter or identify a threat before it happens.