December 7, 2009
Harmony on the Square: Nativity and Light of Peace
Peace reigns on Monument Square tonight, with a Christian Nativity scene somewhat crowding out, but no longer blocking entirely a Peace obelisk representing many different religions.
The two symbols share the north end of the square. The Nativity, with Mary, Joseph and the Baby Jesus and two lighted Christmas trees, and six small billboards, was erected today by a group of Christian churches.
The Light of Peace, a small, octagonal, eight-ft. tall, white obelisk decorated with the word "peace" in many languages, along with the symbols of many different religions, was erected over the weekend by Olympia Brown Unitarian Universalist Church. It is an effort "to honor all traditions," said the Rev. Tony Larsen when it was put up for the first time last year.
The two symbols were closer together last year. This year, the Nativity at first was erected in front of the obelisk, blocking its view from the square, until members of Olympia Brown moved it somewhat to the west today, so both are visible -- although if you don't look carefully you could miss the obelisk entirely.
The relative harmony is in stark contrast to 2007's holiday display, when an Atheists' Pyramid was erected on the exact spot where the Light of Peace now stands.