Better East Texas: Henderson County nativity controversy - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Better East Texas: Henderson County nativity controversy

By Pat Stacey

A groundswell of spiritual emotion assembled two weekends ago on the grounds of the Henderson County Courthouse in Athens. Thousands turned out in support of the nativity scene on display on the grounds of the courthouse. 

The display faced a legal challenge recently and local churches joined hands to defend the display and voice their support of the decision by local officials to keep the display in place. 

The Freedom From Religion Foundation exercised a mild protest based on the grounds that they believed the display was an example of a state sponsored religion making it unconstitutional and against the law.  Henderson County officials held firm in their decision and they need to be applauded. 

For far too long the symbols of Christmas and for that matter the Christian faith have been pushed out of the courthouse, the state house and Washington D. C. 

You may reject the Christian faith and that is a right that you absolutely have, but to work to try to silence and remove the display goes against the constitution and the right to free speech and right of freedom of religion and, and this is often overlooked by those opposing nativity scenes, the right from prohibiting the free exercise of religion. 

As Americans, we have the right to publicly express our spiritual beliefs as individuals and as a believing family and we need to exercise that right more often and it will make for a Better East Texas. 

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