In the last two years, Nativity scenes have popped up at a number of state capitol buildings, including those in Georgia, Michigan, Illinois, Washington, Texas, Nebraska, Massachusetts, and yes, even California. How has this happened?
The well-known legal firm the Thomas More Society teamed up with the American Nativity Scene to provide Nativity figures (free of charge) to capitol buildings and other public places with the goal of keeping the key message of Christmas--the birth of Christ--in the pubic eye. It's all perfectly legal, soundly protected by the First Amendment. The National Catholic Register* reports:
In just the last three years, the ANS and the Thomas More Society working with “the blessing of [their] special benefactor/angel,” as they put it, have shipped over 300 Nativity scenes to 32 different states. Their official notice about the continuing success of this Nativity scene emphasizes that many of these “were placed in public parks, libraries, farm roads and government buildings but most importantly they are being displayed in the capitols in many of our states.”How refreshing! Good things are happening, but most often quietly. It's easy to miss them, hidden behind the noise of the headlines.
God bless the Thomas More Society for their valiant work on so many important fronts, as well as the generous American Nativity Scene organization. And may God bless you, faithful reader, with a glorious Christmas and a bright spirit in the year ahead.
*For more information on the project, see the article in the National Catholic Register (Nov. 15, 2017).