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By Greg Goodsell

4/16/2010 (5 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Icon at Oklahoma church stirs controversy

A crucifix above an altar at the St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Warr Acres, Oklahoma is creating some controversy. Some visitors claim that the icon depicts the male genitalia of Christ, while others say it just shows his abdomen while he is extended on the cross.

A crucifix above an altar at the St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Warr Acres, Oklahoma is creating some controversy. Some visitors claim that the icon depicts the male genitalia of Christ, while others say it just shows his abdomen while his extended on the cross.

A crucifix above an altar at the St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Warr Acres, Oklahoma is creating some controversy. Some visitors claim that the icon depicts the male genitalia of Christ, while others say it just shows his abdomen while his extended on the cross.

Highlights

By Greg Goodsell

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

4/16/2010 (5 years ago)

Published in U.S.


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "I've had people who have vocally said that that's what they see there. I've had people who have been just as vocal who said that's not what they're seeing there," the Reverend Philip Seeton, the church's pastor says. "There are a couple people who have left the parish. There are people in the parish who don't like it and have stayed." The 10-foot-tall crucifix has been hanging in the church since late February. Local artist Janet Jaime, the designer of the cross has declined comment. Reverend Seeton says the crucifix doesn't concern him, and there are no plans to remove it. In addition, Monsignor Edward Weisenburger of the Oklahoma City Archdiocese has said he has no problems with the crucifix, and that the archdiocese has received no complaints about it. There are some members of the church who express concern that the crucifix is one of many recent decisions made by Seeton, who has been at the church since 2008. One parishioner who has attended the church for 35 years calls the artwork "the straw on the camel's back. I think it's an embarrassment to our Lord. I think it's an embarrassment to our parishioners. And I think it's an embarrassment to our visitors." A non-Catholic visitor attending a funeral at the Church says that she was "appalled at the sexualization of Christ." "I was horrified," another recent visitor declared. "I believe in freedom of expression. I believe in artistic freedom. I believe that a church is a holy place, and I certainly don't want people telling anyone how to worship, but I was shocked, stunned, and if I hadn't been prepared already, I think I would have just been ill."

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