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Springfield Catholic bishop goes off on Satanic Temple capitol display, marriage equality

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The annual holiday displays went up at the state capitol the last week of November. And like past years, along with a Nativity scene, there’s also a display from Chicago’s Satanic Temple. That did not please the featured speaker.

Catholic Bishop John Paprocki railed about the inclusion of the Temple’s display, as well as laws guaranteeing abortion access and marriage equality.

The State Journal-Register reported that Paprocki alluded to past legislation that legalized marriage and provided for taxpayer funding of abortion, saying the state capitol is “where much evil has been perpetrated in recent years.”

According to the newspaper, he said the recent repeal of the parental notification requirement, “not only attacks the right to life of the unborn, but also attacks the rights of parents.” 

After marriage quality was legalized in Illinois in 2013, Paprocki performed an “exorcism in reparation for the sin of same-sex marriage” at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception.

The Satanic Temple is a non-theistic, as in believing in no god, organization that works to limit the intrusion of religion into government, usually by using laws promoted by conservative religious organizations.

State law allows for any religious holiday display as long as it’s not paid for by the state. The Nativity has been on display at the capitol rotunda since 2008. The Satanic Temple’s “Knowledge is the Greatest Gift” display has been put up since 2019. The Journal-Register reported that other displays included a Christmas tree, a menorah and a “Festivus” aluminum pole.

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