Atheists’ sign sparks controversy

7470226_bg1.jpgVernon (WTNH) _ A sign posted by Atheists in the Rockville’s Central Park has people talking, prompting calls to the town hall and the local clergy.

The Connecticut Valley Atheists posted the three-sided sign, which some call a billboard, and it was the only sign in the town center marking the Holiday season. Two sides of the display feature the Twin Towers, framed by the words “Imagine No Religion.”

This Christmas, Martha Chennelle and Amy Houser say Vernon could use a few prayers, considering the sign standing in front of town hall.

“We believe that Christ is the reason for Christmas,” said Chennelle.

“I feel like this is an attack on my beliefs as a religious person,” said Houser.

The sign, put up by the Connecticut Valley Atheist Group, which was supposed to mark the winter solstice, but the “Imagine No Religion” part of it, taken from John Lennon’s song, “Imagine,” has a lot of people upset.

Houser says the sign mocks her religion during a holy time of the year. “Imagine no religion is an attack against me, as any person of faith should take it as an attack against them,” Houser said.

The town issued permits to the Atheist group to put the sign in the park. They also issued permits to a group of churches that plans to put a nativity scene and to a local synagogue to put up a menorah.

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