A “satanic display” of a pentagram with a nearby banner and sign were placed in Sanborn Square in Boca Raton, Florida, overnight and are causing a stir in the surrounding faith community, according to a local church.
Not far from the display are a Biblical nativity scene, a Christmas tree and a menorah. The banner and sign, which appear to have been covered in spray paint overnight, once read “In Satan We Trust” and “Celebrate Winter Solstice,” based on images of the original display circulating online.
The display prompted St. Gregory’s Episcopal Church and the a local interfaith organization to release a statement. They plan to post another banner at the park this morning.
The church banner will read the following: “The Interfaith religious community honors our constitutional rights of freedom of speech and worship. We are blessed to live in a country that cherishes and protects these rights. The use of satanic symbols is offensive, and harmful to our community’s well being. We find it a shameful and hypocritical way to advocate for freedom from religion.”
The square is designated by the city as a free-speech zone.
Boca Raton Mayor Susan Haynie visited Sanborn Square on Wednesday morning to support the interfaith community’s decision to erect a banner near the scene.
“I find (the satanic display) offensive,” Haynie said. “However, the same constitutional right to freedom of speech that allows the church to display the nativity scene also allows for this objectionable symbol.”
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