BELLE PLAINE, MINN.- A Catholic nonprofit group, America Needs Fatima, organized a prayer rally on Saturday, July 15, prior to the city council meeting which would decide whether or not to allow a Satanic memorial in a Belle Plaine park.
On Monday, July 17, the Belle Plaine City Council will vote on a resolution that will ban any religious monuments at the park. While this resolution would block a Satanic monument from being erected, it would also mean that a two-foot statue of a soldier kneeling with his rifle next to a cross would also be removed. The city council stated in the resolution that the measure is a means by which to uphold the “safeBty, serenity, and decorum of the park.”
As reported by Alpha News in January, much of the controversy originally surrounded the inclusion of the cross in the “Joe” statue, which was removed by representatives of the Belle Plaine Veterans Club on the recommendation of City Attorney Bob Vose. The city’s decision to remove the cross was influenced by the actions of legal advocacy group, Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF).
While the cross was removed for a few months, the city eventually reinstalled it sometime in April, which led the Satanic Temple of Salem, Massachusetts, to request permission to place a satanic monument on the site.
According to the Crux, Father Brian Lynch, a local pastor at Our Lady of the Prairie Parish, has been outspoken against problems he believes the satanic monument poses. He says the Satanic monument “violates multiple sections of Belle Plaine’s city code, which prohibits any nuisance or offense “against decency or public morals.” Lynch has also lead many prayer rallies in the park to give Catholics support surrounding this issue.
The Star Tribune reported that 150 people attended the prayer service in the park on Saturday.