Vandals destroy gay nativity scene in Los AngelesTop Highlights, Breaking News Saturday, December 31st, 2011
A gay-inspired nativity scene at a Claremont church outside of Los Angeles was vandalized by criminals over the weekend. Authorities are investigating the incident as a hate crime.
Claremont United Methodist Church has displayed unusual nativity scenes thereby known to create controversial presentations, and this year, the nativity scene featured a Christmas gathering along with gay couples as part of the scene.
Three couples were depicted under the star of Bethlehem. Two of the three couples were gay – two women were holding hands as well as two men.
Church officials reported that vandals pushed over the gay couples and left the heterosexual couples standing.
“Christ’s birth in a stable had a lot to do with poverty and being marginalized,” said Pastor Sharon Rhodes-Wickett. “What this church has tried to do through these scenes is say, ‘What would that look like today?'”
In 1993, Claremont Methodist Church officially welcomed lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people into their congregation.
Ed Kania, 60, a gay member of the church explains the nativity scene is “a reminder that although there are pockets of acceptance, not everybody is accepting. We’re all kind of disappointed, but we’re using it as a rallying point.”
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