Local News

Transgender pride flag found burned at Brookline church

Police are investigating the incident as a hate crime.

United Parish in Brookline

Police are investigating after a Brookline church reported a transgender pride flag was found burned last month.

The incident occurred at United Parish, near Coolidge Corner. The flag was found damaged on Aug. 25 after being on display on the building’s front lawn, the church said in a Facebook post on Saturday. 

Brookline police detectives are investigating the incident as a hate crime, a department spokesman said in a statement to The Boston Globe. Police believe that the flag burning took place sometime between 10 p.m. on Aug. 25 and 9 a.m. on Aug. 26. 

No arrests have been made. 


Representatives from United Parish said in the post that they are determined to overcome the attack, and that it will not dissuade them from displaying inclusive imagery in the future. 

“The hate and violence shown on our lawn has no place in the kind of world that Jesus imagined and God created. No act of vandalism will deter us from expressing Christ’s love as fully as possible in order to overcome this kind of hatred,” the church said. 

Senior Pastor Kent French, in an interview with the Globe, said that he did not know of any act of vandalism like this at the church before.

United Parish is planning to replace the flag with another transgender pride flag, to be displayed in a less accessible location, French added. 

“I feel like my job … is to overcome hate with love,” French told the paper. “And, you know, if someone does something like this anonymously, we don’t have an opportunity to do that directly. Our prayer was to pray in general for that and the way we see it all over the world, but certainly we would invite dialogue with someone who has those feelings.”


The church is encouraging anyone with information about the crime to contact the Brookline Police Department’s LGBTQ+ Liaison, Kristin Healy, at [email protected].

“We at the United Parish in Brookline believe that all people are made in the image of God and embrace and cherish every person and every kind of family,” the church said.


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