Statement By The Archdiocese of Newark. May 23, 2019
The Archdiocese of Newark embraces and welcomes all within our faithful community – it’s unfortunate that facts regarding wall paintings at the Bergen Arts & Science Charter School have been grossly misrepresented.
The Holy Trinity Church simply raised two concerns. First, that the school refrain from consistently painting on the building surfaces. Secondly, that the school remove some content in a new painting, which included some symbols of sexuality that were inappropriate for the building, as the building is utilized by parishioners of the Church, as well as the School.
While the focus of attention has been on an illustration of a heart – there was neither any specific discussion about that section of the painting, nor direction to remove it. Clearly the school or teachers decided to amend that part of the mural in response on their own.
As already indicated, since the building is utilized by parishioners of the church, as well as the school, Holy Trinity simply has asked the tenants to be cognizant of this when displaying information and materials. The mural violated that understanding in its permanent nature – directly painted on the surface – and in some of the content.
We wish that Garden State Equality first had contacted us directly about the matter. We are more than willing to meet with them to discuss it.
Garden State Equality’s press release response here.