Tuesday, December 16, 2003


After first refusing to display pictures of Jesus in an art show, the Meridan library's board of directors has voted to allow the paintings after all:
Directors voted unanimously Monday to allow artist Mary Morley to display her paintings of Jesus at the library as part of her exhibit.

Library director Marcia Trotta recently asked Morley to omit three paintings that included Jesus from her show, which included 14 other paintings and was titled, "Visions, Hopes and Dreams."

"Reviewing the facts of the matter in light of constitutional requirements as the board presently understands them, the board has decided to allow Ms. Morley to exhibit all of her submitted paintings, as has been the past practice with other individuals," read a prepared statement from the board.

"The Board hopes that Ms. Morley accepts that offer in the gracious spirit that we intend to extend it."

Morley, who did not attend the meeting, responded, "Amen to this."

The three paintings in question depicted the Crucifixion, the Nativity and Jesus carrying the cross to Calvary.

Trotta asked Morley last month to omit the three from the exhibit. But Trotta allowed two paintings of Jesus' face, as well as images of John F. Kennedy and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., a tribute to the World Trade Center, an image of Old Testament prophet Elijah and one of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai.

All of those were historical, Trotta argued at the time.

The phrase "in light of constitutional requirements" means our lawyers are telling us that this public, tax supported institution must--in this instance since everyone is looking--actually refrain from discriminating against those wishing to express a Christian faith. At least they did end up doing the right thing.

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