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SUBMITTED by Richard J. Bogan, Knights of Columbus (12-Dec-2010)

To the Citizens of the Village of Newark:

Our Village Board has denied permission to the Knights of Columbus, Newark Council 897, to place the Christmas Nativity Scene, the crèche, in Central Park. In conversation with one of our members, the mayor stated that “some people” may find it offensive. The Village Board has authorized the expenditure of thousands of tax dollars on marching Christmas Nutcrackers, Santas, snowmen and even a Christmas helicopter but will not allow a depiction of the birth of our savior Jesus Christ, visited by the magi and the shepherds in a manger scene at no cost to the taxpayer.

The scene has been displayed for several years in Central Park and I am not aware of any complaint that it was offensive. The figures, originally contributed by Father Tom Celso, a local priest, had become somewhat weather beaten over the years. This year the Knights were excited that the figures had been repaired, restored and hand pained by local artist Frank Scalise. The stable fence has a new coat of paint and stain. The scene was ready to proceed but the board said no.

Who finds the nativity offensive? Not the neighbors to Central Park. The Knights were contacted and permission given to place the scene in the yard of Mr. Tom Pusateri, and alongside the Park Presbyterian Church. The Knights have decided to accept the offer of the Benevolent Order of The Elks and will be placing the scene on their property at High and South Main. The Knights believe this location is best in keeping with the theme of “Keep Christ in Christmas.” A special thank - you is extended to Mr. Pusateri, Park Presbyterian and all who supported having a Christian Christmas reminder downtown, again this year.

The scene will be constructed this week as weather and man power permits. A dedication ceremony is scheduled for Sunday, December 19 2010 at 2:00 PM. The Knights of Columbus cordially invites you and all persons who are not offended by keeping Christ in Christmas to attend and participate.


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5 Comments to "Knights Take Action to Keep Christ in Christmas"

  1. Ted keyser Said,

    I am offended at their action. It is time to take back Newark. All the money wasted on the mural and they do this. Can we impeach the mayor?

    Posted on Sun Dec 19, 08:45:00 AM EST

  2. Anonymous Said,

    Be careful what you wish for Mr. Keyser. If you impeach the current Mayor, trustee Avery will succeed him. Do you really want that?

    Posted on Sun Dec 19, 09:22:00 AM EST

  3. Anonymous Said,

    freedom of religion means we do not promote one belief. So private property yes and public is what the United States was built on and for all people and beliefs. So staying out of it is best for all government and public institutions. Whether the dominate belief or not.

    This was the correct move. With that said I will be stopping over to see the scene as every year.

    Posted on Sun Dec 19, 09:53:00 PM EST

  4. Anonymous Said,

    No one person should have that kind of power! If someone doesn't like it don't look at it,just keep passing by.But for those of us who are not ashamed to believe in the true meaning of Christmas it is offensive to have someone else decide for us..so talk about being offended that it is not being displayed as in the past, you bet I am!Should we be surprised, of course not, Newark has been going downhill for along time which should tell us that we need govt officials that work for the people.Just look at the houses on the market for sale,the foreclosures in Newark alone, people are only too happy to leave but nothing is bringing them to Newark to settle.Just keep it up and Newark will be a ghost town....I am one those leaving this corrupt town!

    Posted on Mon Dec 20, 11:14:00 AM EST

  5. Todd W. Howard Said,

    One's freedom of religion should not negate someone else's. Are there other religions in Newark that have been denied the use of the park for their holiday display? It is sad that Peter and his band of merry morons made this decision.
    Was the decision made as to "not offend some people" as stated? Or was it fueled by personality conflicts?
    Kudos to John Zornow who at least had enough sense to see what the board was doing was wrong, and was the sole vote against the decision.

    Posted on Tue Dec 21, 06:57:00 AM EST


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