A Roman Catholic diocese in Sicily has publicly apologized to angry parents after its bishop told a group of children that Santa Claus did not exist.
In a Facebook post and subsequent comments on Friday (10), the Diocese of Noto insisted that Bishop Antonio Stagliano had no intention of destroying young people’s dreams two weeks before Christmas.
The director of communications for the diocese, Reverend Alessandro Paolino, said Stagliano was trying to emphasize the true meaning of Christmas and the story of Saint Nicholas, a bishop who gave gifts to the poor and was persecuted by a Roman emperor.
Italian media reports quoted Stagliano as saying during a recent religious festival that Santa Claus does not exist and that his red costume was created by Coca-Cola advertising company.
“First of all, on behalf of the bishop, I express my sadness at this statement, which has generated disappointment in the young, and I want to make it clear that Monsignor Stagliano’s intentions were completely different,” Paolino wrote on the diocese’s Facebook page. .
“Certainly we should not eliminate the imagination of children, but we should draw from them good positive examples of life,” he continued.
Therefore, Santa Claus is an effective image to convey the importance of giving, generosity and sharing. But when this image loses its meaning, you see Santa Claus aka consumerism, the desire to own, buy, buy and buy again, so you have to reevaluate, and give it a new meaning.”
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