Northern Ireland news

Belfast's Cairnshill Methodist Church damaged in arson attack

Cairnshill Methodist Church on the outskirts of Belfast was attacked by arsonists

A CHURCH on the outskirts of Belfast has been damaged in an arson attack.

Cairnshill Methodist Church at Ballylenaghan Road in Castlereagh was "forcibly" broken into sometime overnight on Thursday.

Police said "a number of fires" were started within the building, causing damage to the interior.

A motive for the arson attack has yet to be established.

Rev Brian Anderson, president of the Methodist Church in Ireland, said he "utterly condemned" the attack and urged anyone with information to contact police.

"At the heart of the Methodist identity is a saying by the Rev John Wesley in which he described Methodists as the friends of all and enemies of none," he said.

"This has been at the heart of the Cairnshill Methodist congregation, whose only desire is to serve the community among whom it is set."

Police have also appealed for information.

Northern Ireland news

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