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Vandals target historic church in Port Deposit

Damage estimated in the tens of thousands of dollars
Tome United Methodist Church
Tome United Methodist Church
Posted at 4:37 PM, Feb 03, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-03 17:17:40-05

PORT DEPOSIT, Md. — Some would call it sacrilege, while others---just simple, mindless vandalism.

More than a century old windows smashed in a historic building on North Main Street in Port Deposit---once home to the former Tome United Methodist Church.

“When troopers arrived at the scene, they saw that some stained glass windows had been broken and some items, including some robes, had been taken from the former church building,” said Ron Snyder of the Maryland State Police.

Three windows, dating back to the late 19th century, valued at more than $12,000 apiece.

When the church closed down five years ago, it handed over the deed to the property to a non-profit called ‘Community Connecting Us’.

“So many people grew up and died in that church,” said Kat Koenig, “and we’re trying to turn it into a community center, expand it, as well as space for the museum next door, and just everything that we’re trying to do for it, it’s just being… We can’t. Not with all of these obstacles in our way.”

This isn’t the first time the church has been vandalized. Police say a few months ago, someone broke in during a similar incident and doused the interior of the place with fire extinguishers.

That took out an additional pair of the historic windows adding to the mounting costs of trying to renovate the building.

“I’ve been applying for grants in the past. I’m applying for one right now to get the roof repaired for the roof leak,” said Koenig, “So before we could even begin any other work, we need to get the water seepage from the building taken care of so it’s just insult to injury.”

Neighbors report seeing four teenage boys running from the church in this latest incident, and if you have any information, which could help the Maryland State Police, you’re asked to call 410-996-7800.