St. Pete church plans to overcome hate vandalism with a message of peace, unity

Cryptic white supremacist messages drawn in chalk
Posted at 11:20 PM, Nov 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-17 01:57:01-05

On Monday, Pastor Candace Shultis of King of Peace Metropolitan Community Church in St. Petersburg stumbled upon swastikas and symbols of hate.

In blue chalk, someone drew swastikas the letters MAGA (Make America Great Again) and the number 1488.  

The number 1488, according to the Anti-Defamation League represents a combination of two poplar white supremacist numeric symbols.

“It heightens the level of anxiety in the congregation people are frightened by this sort of thing and they have a right to be,” Shultis said.  

Following the general election, Shultis posted on her sign outside of her church, “love one another, please.”

Shultis believes the symbols were drawn on church property and because her church is comprised of 300 members that are mostly LGBTQ.

“We have, as Metropolitan Community Church, stood as love for a long time almost 50 plus years,” Shultis said.

Shultis said anyone who has hate in their hearts is invited to attend one of her sermons to learn how fulfilling a life of love and peace can be.  

“You need to come to church and worship with us and see the joy we have the love we have,”  Shultis said.  “We are an incredibly diverse congregation.”

St. Petersburg Police are asking anyone with information to give them a call at 727-893-7780.