A group called The Satanic Temple plans to install a black steel cube with inverted pentagrams in a Minneapolis suburb as a tribute to war veterans — and local Catholics are up in arms.
“The inverted pentagrams on the Satanic monument . . . will prompt young people to consider Satanism for themselves and to reject the good moral behavior required for an ordered and peaceful society,” Father Brian Lynch, pastor of Our Lady of the Prairie, told The Catholic Spirit.
The Satanic Temple — an activist group which uses Satanic imagery to promote egalitarianism, social justice and the separation of church and state — will placing the 23-inch-by-23-inch cube in Veterans Memorial Park in Belle Plaine.
On top of it is an upside down soldier’s helmet, which honors fallen soldiers and acts as an offering bowl.
The city is allowing the monument to be built after a religious freedom group threatened to sue over another statue, which features a soldier praying over a grave marked with a cross, reports WCCO-TV, which notes it will be the first Satanic monument on public property in U.S. history.
Lucien Greaves, co-founder of The Satanic Temple, which presented the proposal to the Belle Plaine City Council, told The Catholic Spirit his group uses the “metaphorical construct” of Satan, but not as a symbol of evil.
“We really do embrace the opportunity to put up a memorial tribute to veterans in their honor,” Greaves told the publication.
But Catholic groups aren’t convinced. They recently staged a prayer protest in the park in which more than 50 people showed up.