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School Housed In NJ Church Modifies LGBTQ Mural Called 'Obscene'

May 24, 2019 - 6:30 pm

HACKENSACK, N.J. (AP) — A charter school that rents space from a Roman Catholic church in northern New Jersey has modified LGBT components in a student-created mural after church officials raised concerns.

The Rev. Paul Prevosto, pastor of Holy Trinity Church in Hackensack, tells The Record that the mural was brought to his attention by parishioners concerned about a depiction of male figures that he said looked “obscene.” It showed abstract figures with interlocking circle and arrow symbols that represent the male gender.

The church rents space to the Bergen Arts and Science Charter School. Their lease agreement includes a stipulation about Catholic values, so the school was notified about the concerns.

The church uses common spaces in the school, including the cafeteria where the mural was painted.

School officials say they respect the students’ artistic expressions and the church’s directives as its landlord.

The ACLU responded to the decision to modify the mural in a tweet.