After the confrontation with students of Covington Catholic, a band of Native American rights activists reportedly led by Nathan Phillips attempted to disrupt Mass at DC’s National Shrine with drum-and-chant.
Nathan Phillips is the Native American rights activist known for his involvement in the incident with students of Covington Catholic High School, where release of a longer video painted a different picture of his role in the encounter.
A day after the Indigenous Peoples March incident, another group of Native American rights activists reportedly led by Nathan Phillips attempted to enter Washington D.C.’s Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception during a Saturday evening Mass.
According to CNA, a group of 20 demonstrators were prevented from entering the basilica during the 5:15 pm Vigil Mass by a security guard, who described the situation as “tense.” They attempted to enter while playing drums and chanting during the celebration of Mass, but eventually “left without incident.”
“It was really upsetting. There were about twenty people trying to get in, we had to lock the doors and everything. I’m just really grateful that nothing too bad happened, they were really angry.”
Footage of the incident at the National Shrine showed one demonstrator saying that the group had gathered at the shrine to hold the Church “accountable” for the alleged actions of the Covington Catholic students and for the “colonial violence that the Catholic Church reproduces every day.”
The security guard said the encounter was a disappointment during an otherwise busy and joyful weekend for the shrine.
“We had hundreds and hundreds of people from all over the country come here to celebrate life, to celebrate each other together. That a protest tried to come inside during Mass was really the worst. It’s a house of worship, a place of prayer where people come to celebrate. All this anger is so against what we are all about here.”