Jessica Ahlquist’s High School Now Has a New (Secular) Mural

Nearly two years after Jessica Ahlquist fought — and won — a legal battle against her high school over a religious mural, Cranston High School West has finally found a suitable replacement.

Just as a reminder, this is the mural that was in the auditorium for nearly 50 years:

Our Heavenly Father.

Grant us each day the desire to do our best.
To grow mentally and morally as well as physically.
To be kind and helpful to our classmates and teachers.
To be honest with ourselves as well as with others.
Help us to be good sports and smile when we lose as well as when we win.
Teach us the value of true friendship.
Help us always to conduct ourselves so as to bring credit to Cranston High School West.

Amen.

Jessica sued the school (with the help of the ACLU) in April of 2011. This was a constitutional violation with its endorsement of religion and the debate over how to handle the mural divided the community. The school board eventually decided they would put up a fight, a decision that ultimately led to them owing the ACLU $173,000 in legal fees. The pushback and threats from other students also led to Jessica not returning back to Cranston for her senior year.

Yesterday, the Class of 1963 — the group that gifted the school with the original religious mural — gave the school a new one as part of a celebration of their 50-year reunion (as well as another matching banner with the “School Creed”). This one, thankfully, is secular and constitutional:

The new mural (Steve Szydlowski – The Providence Journal)

The mural reads FALCONS (the school mascot) vertically down as an acronym, with each letter representing lessons students should internalize:

Foster an atmosphere of good will and respect

Affirm our efforts to conduct ourselves with honor

Learn from our achievements and mistakes

Choose wisely the paths taken and friends made

Overcome prejudice and embrace diversity

Nurture ourselves, families, friends and communities

Strive for excellence in all our future endeavors

No mention of “Our Heavenly Father.” No mention of the word “Amen.” No reason for another lawsuit.

On Saturday afternoon, before an invitation-only ceremony at the school to unveil the new mural, representatives of the class said the new gift was a way of moving on from the conflict stirred up by the old one, which drew national media coverage.

“The community is healed,” said Janice Bertino. “There is no more controversy.”

80 people were invited to the unveiling ceremony.

Jessica wasn’t on the list.


But from now on, thanks to her bravery, whenever students look at the new mural in the auditorium, they’ll be able to take away valuable life lessons… instead of the school’s official position on the nature of God.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the chair of Foundation Beyond Belief and a high school math teacher in the suburbs of Chicago. He began writing the Friendly Atheist blog in 2006. His latest book is called The Young Atheist's Survival Guide.

  • Jasper

    Most expensive mural ever.

    • http://www.last.fm/user/m6wg4bxw/ m6wg4bxw
      • Jasper

        Okay, so it’s in the top-ten. Right?

        • http://www.last.fm/user/m6wg4bxw/ m6wg4bxw

          I’m not sure. Let me check with the Sistine Chapel and get back to you.

      • squinney

        AWESOME. lol

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        But cost is not value. I’m not sure if I have a robust argument for the difference, but the price someone is willing to pay on the open market doesn’t seem like the same thing. Although to whoever buys the FB mural it is, so, um, hm. (the sound of an argument sputtering out)

        • http://www.last.fm/user/m6wg4bxw/ m6wg4bxw

          Ha! I know exactly what you mean, and I’m not sure how I would argue it either.

      • Agrajag

        That example is just silly. He was paid in some quite worthless stock — most startups fail, and even among those who succeed only a tiny minority ever get high valuations.

        That something he owned *subsequently* rose in value doesn’t change anything. Those murals where *cheap* — they where paid for by something that (at the time they where made) had a very low value.

        Having a guy paint your house in exchange for 2 lottery-tickets is CHEAP, even if he subsequently by dumb luck wins $100 million.

        • http://www.last.fm/user/m6wg4bxw/ m6wg4bxw

          I agree with you. It is a silly example, which is why I posted it. I was being playful. And now, I’d like to, sort-of, paraphrase your final remark while substituting

          Removing an unconstitutional banner from the wall of a high school might also be considered a relatively cheap endeavor, even if people in the school and surrounding community decide to fight against it, resulting in an expensive lawsuit. Silly.

    • Mike Subia

      And whose fault is that? Had they done the right thing at the get-go they could have avoided the costs.

  • Guest

    A shame about the invite, Ms. Ahlquist, but I can’t help but be relieved that that’s about as close to being a martyr as you’re going to get for such an important cause.

    • vincent findley

      How can you even think of calling someone who ran and went elsewhere for her senior year a martyr

      • Spuddie

        After all bullying by Christians is only “for the sake of their immortal souls”.

      • Paul Reed

        Do you even read things before you reactively reply to it? He said “that’s about as close to being a martyr as you’re going to get
        ie: Not a martyr, but a hell of a lot closer to it than someone who does nothing.

        • vincent findley

          Ok Paul 3/4 martyr, un freekin believable you anal butts on this blog.

          • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

            We know you love us, that’s why you keep coming back.

            • vincent findley

              That I do Rich. Like myself, quite a crop of characters. I’m getting(as I’m sure some of you are) quite a bit of material for my stand up routine.

          • Paul Reed

            No-one’s calling her a martyr. You’re getting all bent out of shape about someone calling her a martyr but no-one was! That’s what I was saying in my previous reply.

            Again, read things and allow the information to filter through before engaging Hasty Reply Protocol.

            What people have been saying is that she’s been brave. Considering all the shit she’s had to put up with, it’s not an unreasonable description, is it?

            • phantomreader42

              vincent’s just pissed off that he didn’t get a chance to rape, murder, and torture her for the glory of his imaginary friend.

              • vincent findley

                You might get a few after this response, but I noticed no thumbs up with this response to Paul Reed. No maater how much you dislike me (and I could give a flying fuck) what you just said was off the chart you f……kface!!

  • randomfactor

    Of COURSE she wasn’t invited. It would be destructive to the facade of inclusion they were building.

    • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

      And by “inclusion”, you mean “uniformity”.

  • squinney

    Christians gonna hate. It’s what they do best.

  • SeekerLancer

    The community may be “healed” but considering they didn’t invite Jessica I’d say it still has a nasty scar.

  • Ryan Jean

    80 people were invited to the unveiling ceremony.
    Jessica wasn’t on the list.

    My surprise-o-meter is in the negative range there. They have to appear to be past the issue, but the community made it abundantly clear that actually being past it is not possible, because they would first have to come to terms with the fact that they were wrong (not bloody likely) and after that with what horrible human beings they all were toward Jessica for so long (even less likely).

    Of course, they also should be recognized, at least in part, for offering up a secular replacement at all when they were never under any obligation to do so, but they still have a long way to go to break even…

  • Savoy47

    ” O Overcome prejudice and embrace diversity”

    Is it possible that the school learned something from the whole thing?

    Or is it their perceived prejudice towards Christians that needs to be overcome?

  • Peter Cranny

    They should have invited Jessica to ceremonially unveil the new one.

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      That would have come off like gloating, but she should have been invited.

      • Agrajag

        She could’ve unveiled it together with one of the people at the forefront of the fight to keep the old mural.

  • Ralph Horque

    I am an atheist, but I think lawsuits like this win us ZERO friends and make us enemies instead. :(

    • Jasper

      If that were the point, sure, it’d be a failure. Enforcing the law, however, is the point, and in that regards, was a success – not just for this case, but for future cases, helping to establish a new norm of reinforced secular culture.

    • C Peterson

      The kind of people you are talking about are already our enemies. People have always made enemies whenever they fought for civil rights. That’s not a reason to stop fighting.

      Little is more important than continually striving to remove religion and religious references from government. If it pisses off some people who don’t understand the Constitution anyway, let it.

    • Jasper

      It’s the same old complaint, from civil rights, women’s rights, etc – “I agree, but can’t they be civil about it?”

    • LesterBallard

      Yeah, fuck the Constitution.

    • J M

      You making that comment is pretty much guaranteed not to make you any friends here yet you did it anyway (and I fully support your right to do it despite strongly disagreeing with it). Perhaps it would be helpful to you to ponder why you are willing to do this with us but are unwilling to do it with people who think you should fewer rights than they.

    • Kenneth Polit

      If you’re not making enemies, you’re doing it wrong.

      • GubbaBumpkin

        “A man can’t be too careful in the choice of his enemies.” – Oscar Wilde

        • http://abb3w.livejournal.com/ abb3w

          “I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made.” – FDR

          “J’ai toujours fait une prière à Dieu, qui est fort courte. La voici: Mon Dieu, rendez nos ennemis bien ridicules! Dieu m’a exaucé.” – Voltaire

          • C.L. Honeycutt

            Started to translate that, then skipped to the end and realized I knew it by heart. <3

            I once quoted that to some theists on another forum, and they all cited it as evidence that I believed in a god after all. *facepalm*

            • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

              And thus nicely demonstrating the quote :-)

    • cary_w

      Making friends was not the point, making the school a better place for generations to come, was the point. Look at what she accomplished, that was worth making some enemies for. If you have to make enemies to do the right thing, then so be it. That’s far better than sitting around doing nothing while her school breaks the law and treats some of its students as second class citizens.

    • GubbaBumpkin

      Shut up and enjoy your seat at the back of the bus.

    • Johnymac2

      I agree with Ralph. It would have been much better to leave this up with a plaque explaining it was a gift from the class of that year, not an official state sponsored item. It would make a great teaching item, to discuss how cultural norms have changed over the past 60 years, and maybe even teach the kids in the school something about history in their local community. Living in Rhode Island, we see religious items all the time in public places. Are we going to rip down and destroy all this history going back to 1637? Are we going to ignore that this state was founded by a man fleeing religious persecution and instead persecute religion? I think it would be on par with the Taliban destroying the Bamiyan Buddist statues.

      • midnight rambler

        FFS, the state was founded by a man fleeing the persecution of state-sponsored religion. That’s exactly why it’s a no-brainer that it should be taken down, and should never have been put up in the first place.

        • vincent findley

          You’re right about him leaving because he was being forced to adhere to one single religion. He founded R.I. on the platform that whatever religion suits you follow it. “freedom of religion” I believe it’s called.

          • Spuddie

            Idiot, he also was the pioneer of the separation of church and state. Roger Williams is one of the reasons we have the Establishment Clause. You know the part that says the government is not allowed to endorse any religion as being “official”.

            Or maybe you don’t know. People like yourself seem to forget there are two parts of the 1st Amendment concerning religious freedom or that religious freedom applies to people other than Bible Thumping Christians.

      • 3lemenope

        Living in Rhode Island, we see religious items all the time in public places.

        We do?

      • Jasper

        Are we going to ignore that this state was founded by a man fleeing religious persecution and instead persecute religion?

        Of course not. Then again, this isn’t even remotely like that. This is prosecution of those violating the law.

        And yes, clearly, those who are working to enforce the laws that maximize a free and open society, and are working to prevent those not in the mainstream religions being treated like second-class citizens is 100% unambiguously identical to religious fundamentalists who want to oppress anyone who isn’t their religion.

        Please, pull your head out of the incomprehensible depths of your ass.

        Of course we can teach about the historical religious influences on society… while not breaking the law. It’s not required that it be a “State-sponsodred item”, only that the State is doing something to express a religious preference.

      • Highlander

        How about a plaque under the new mural explaining how a previous mural that was here was against the law and not inclusive of everyone. It would be a great way to teach about the constitution and the legal process, as well as diversity and tolerance. Then students could ignore it, and just read the mural, just like they would ignore your plaque, but at least the mural would have a better message.

      • Bill Santagata

        That would not have corrected the constitutional violation. This is not the Bamiyan Buddhist statutes: the mural wasn’t destroyed. If some museum wants to put it up somewhere they are more than welcome to.

        Imagine if we did this for every unconstitutional display? A “Whites Only Seat” sign on a public bus violates the 14th Amendment. They were taken down and I imagine many of them were preserved for historical purposes. But they did not leave them up with post-it notes slapped onto them saying “Oh yeah we totally don’t approve of this anymore, but are going to keep them up to ‘educate’ people.”

      • baal

        “by a man fleeing religious persecution”
        You know that some of those persecuted religionists wanted to persecute other religionists and did so in spades once they got here?

      • vincent findley

        2 people now with smarts woo hoo!

    • C.L. Honeycutt

      The fact that it elicits reactions like theirs when people speak up over even supposedly trivial violations is itself reason enough to push.

    • vincent findley

      A Godless Heathen with a cerebro, go figure.

  • C Peterson

    Seems to me, by not inviting Alquist, the school is already ignoring points 1, 5, and 6. So at best, they are the ALCS. Maybe not the best mascot for a school…

    • Tainda

      I was thinking the same thing. Might want to mark #5 off your banner!

      • vincent findley

        You’re right she did overcome prejudice and embrace diversity.She took the easy way out, she left. Now lets hear all the bullshit about the idle threats all 3 days worth and all the protection she needed to get to and from school, the I’m a fucktard stuff and insensitive bullshit. Rosa Parks stood her ground for her beliefs, she didn’t budge an inch. A true activist Ms. Alquist isn’t.

        • Agrajag

          Who are you – to determine what level of discomfort others MUST endure before they are worthy of the honorifics “true activist” ?

          Nobody can do EVERYTHING, yet doing something is better than doing nothing, and Jessica did something while most people do nothing.

          • vincent findley

            Like I said Rosa Parks stood her ground Ms. Alquist ran.

            • Agrajag

              Yes. You said that. You did however, fail to actually answer my question. Who elected you an authority on precicely what amount of discomfort a person MUST endure in order to be “worthy” of being called a “true activist” ?

              • vincent findley

                Discomfort? If a banner that wishes nothing more than good will to thy neighbors and be good to others etc. etc. is discomforting, she must be vomiting on a daily basis carrying all those dead presidents and others in her purse or pocket or pocketbook that say “In God We Trust” on them. She must be traumatized by now.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  Nice dodge! Pretending like the ‘discomfort’ applies to how she felt before she took the case, when it obviously applies to what happens to someone after they make the decision to take a stand.

                  What would be really funny would be to put up a banner thanking “The Great Spirit” and see the knickers twist.

                • vincent findley

                  Not a dodge Rich and you know it! As far as thanking “The Great Spirit” We’d love to see that. That’s what this is all about. Just like in Florida, you all got to put up your monument right next to ours and after The Town of Greece v. Galloway is decided in October you all will be able to put it up right next to the old banner someday.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  If it wasn’t a dodge, then it was ignorance.

                  Rosa Parks was not alone in being forced to the back of the bus. EVERY black person faced the same persecution. That’s not what made her heroic. What made her heroic was deciding to take a stand in spite of the backlash she knew she’d receive. You can argue that Jessica did not suffer sufficient backlash to make her a true activist. But the measure is the backlash, not anything she faced before she decided to stand.

            • baal

              Way to continuously deflect from the fact that christians were persecuting Ms. Alquist. Christian were thugish assholes to her over and over since she stood up and said, “follow the law and traditions of our country”.

        • C.L. Honeycutt

          Man, that is some serious bitterness and jealousy you have going on. Didn’t J.C. help you with that envy thing like he was supposed to?

  • LesterBallard

    Does the school have video surveillance? I won’t be surprised if it’s vandalized, probably with God or Jesus, or some disparaging remark about Jessica Ahlquist.

  • Steven Hewett

    Now I wonder if the people who treated her wth such ‘hate’ actually believe what is stated in this new mural? Certainly, prejudice was part of their vocabulary in the way they treated her.

  • Jon Ewing

    It’s a step in the right direction, even if they were dicks about it. The new one is inclusive and sends a good message.

    • vincent findley

      The first one didn’t? are you freekin kidding me?

      • baal

        No the first banner didn’t send a good message. It said, “pray to the fictional christian god.” That sucks – especially if you’re an atheist or non-christian. The new one is much better.

        • vincent findley

          You anal s.o.b. It said the same f….king thing except for the opening an closing. If that makes you all uncomfortable then you all are just f…ked in the head. So you have a gasm so it’s much better if you say nothing when the event happens than the word that’s usually said when it does.

          • baal

            What?

            • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

              Ya, that was my first reaction. Allow me to translate. Through great pain and suffering, I have become moderately “findley literate”

              “when you have an orgasm, you should say nothing rather than say ‘God’, since the word ‘God’ offends you”

              • baal

                That’s good. I was thinking something worse like, I wasn’t supposed to say anything if jesus fucked me in the head.

                • vincent findley

                  And he still would forgive you if you didn’t

                • baal

                  Argleblargh, do you speak it?!
                  Yes, yes you do.

                  The missing antecedents are killing me here.

          • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

            I was about to post that clip of Jules asking if the person he was addressing spoke English. After a 3rd reading I think I finally sorted it out. The beauty of the school not suggesting to us what we should say when we ‘gasm’ is that we all get to pick what we want to say, or not say, when we ‘gasm’.

            So if “Heavenly Father” and “Amen” turn your crank, nobody’s stopping you.

  • A3Kr0n

    Awesome work Jessica!

  • Heidi McClure

    A heartfelt thank you to Jessica and everyone else who stands up to religious bias.

  • Renshia

    Ah! the community was healed, but not healed enough to invited the person that helped them learn the lesson.

    Ha, At least she didn’t have to go.

  • Anna

    I’m glad there’s finally an appropriate, secular mural, but it’s a bit depressing to realize how much effort it took. The entire controversy could have been avoided if the school had just chosen to do the right thing in the first place.

    • Donaving

      It’s a shame you weren’t around in 1963 to tell them not to accept the mural. It really is.

      With that in mind: You know about factory-farming and all that? Obesity?

      Perhaps there’s something that you could do about the prevalence of fast food outlets at high and middle schools and colleges.

      Interested?

      Bear in mind–this isn’t retroactive tut-tutting about something you find offensive.

      But actual action. That’s a lot harder.

      • David Simon

        Shorter Donaving: You suck because you waste time commenting on the internet instead of solving problems! Er, wait…

        • Donaving

          I humbly apologize for attacking your Sacred Cow.

        • vincent findley

          And everbody else does what on this site?

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        Funny, you never see Joe Klein turning the fight against childhood obesity into a passive aggressive attack on someone else’s legal expression of opinion.

      • C.L. Honeycutt

        It’s a shame you weren’t around in 1963 to tell them not to accept the mural. It really is.

        Gosh, Anna couldn’t possibly have been talking about when the school was more recently asked to take down the mural, rather than about 1963, could she? Nowai.

        It’s a shame you weren’t around for that one class in elementary school when everyone was being taught not to randomly and hypocritically assault others out of nowhere with their own obsessive personal crusades.

      • Anna

        I was referring to when they were asked to take the mural down. They should have done the right thing then. But since you mentioned it, they should have never accepted the mural in the first place. I have to wonder if the original sponsors were simply having a petulant reaction to Engel v. Vitale (1962) and/or Abington School District v. Schempp (1963).

        As for the rest of your comment, I’m not sure why you have a bee in your bonnet. Are we not allowed to deal with church-state violations until the rest of the world’s problems have been solved? That seems like a good way to never get anything done.

      • vincent findley

        Couldn’t have been said better!

  • Paul Reed

    Well done, Class of 1963

  • Malcolm Reynolds

    Step by step…

    • Tainda

      Captain!

      Sorry lol

  • C.L. Honeycutt

    “The community is healed,” said Janice Bertino.

    Liar. Even if you were empowered to make such a judgment: Liar.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/chidy/ chicago dyke, TOWAN

    for me, it just reveals the whole foolishness of high school sloganeering. Go falcons! yeah, rah! cause i know when i was a teen, i sure was thinking about excellence and striving for valor and shit. not.
    F is for fucking
    A is for alcohol
    L is for lying
    C is for cocaine
    O is for off road 4x4ing
    N is for “no, mom. that wasn’t me.”
    S is for sleeping in and skipping class.

    or at least, that’s what i remember from high school, and i went to three of them.

    • Atwatersedge

      Wasn’t like that for me. Or my friends.

      • jg29a

        Just did a little of the F and a lot of the O myself. Oh, yeah, and some of the L, most likely. GOOOOOOOO FOOL!

      • Anna

        I did a little of the “L,” but nothing else in high school. I’m sure there was some of the rest going on, but I was in the drama club/AP crowd, so I didn’t hear much about it.

        • baal

          I was in drama / did plays in highschool. It was a raunchy bunch who liked to play a game called, “what happens when the house lights are off”.

          • Anna

            Your drama department sounds a lot more interesting than mine was!

    • vincent findley

      The only one of you all who gets it!! Nothing more than High School idle threats and sloganeering.

  • rg57

    Foster an atmosphere of good will and respect – failed
    Affirm our efforts to conduct ourselves with honor – failed
    Overcome prejudice and embrace diversity – failed

    Off to a good start.

  • MostlyHarmless

    Chill people. Chill. Its all good. They didn’t try to put up another religious plaque. I don’t expect them to Thank Jessica for showing them how to be more inclusive.

    I am actually fairly impressed that they put up a secular replacement. Good on them. I hope they embrace their motto and “embrace diversity”. They have set the new bar. Now live it.

  • Tor

    Lucky they weren’t in California (thank you San Francisco Planning Department). The banner might have been protected as a “potential contributor to a possible historic environment.”

  • Gus

    That’s a much better message than the old banner. What I like most about it is that it puts the responsibility on the students for their actions, saying: we will do this, as opposed to the old one, where the responsibility is on God: please help us do these very basic things to be human, because we can’t be counted on to be good on our own.

    That’s what happens when you take God out. You take responsibility for your own actions. You decide what kind of place your school is going to be and how you’re going to help it get there.

  • OCRazor

    Anyone know what happened to the old mural? Just curious. I hope they didn’t put it in a middle school or something.

    • islandbrewer

      It was removed, crated up, and stored in a basement:

      http://video.pbs.org/video/2365004455/

      Off topic, the entire pbs series is pretty good. They did an excellent job (and I know how hard it is to walk the line) of being “issue neutral.”

      Edit: In the clip I linked, I love the quote at the end from the author of the original banner. “I don’t care about the minority. The majority rules, or it should.” It totally encapsulates their philosophy.

      • OCRazor

        Great video. Thanks for posting. An you’re right, the video ends with a real eye roller!

      • Paul Reed

        Omg, he actually said that! What a loon!

  • joshuaism

    Couldn’t they have just removed the “School Prayer”, “Our Heavenly Father”, and “Amen” sections from the mural and replaced the top graphic with the new falcon graphic? I like the sentiments presented in the latest mural, but I hate acrostics.

    • Pustulio

      They could have, but they refused.

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      I don’t recall the exact details, but the ACLU proposed several edit compromises that didn’t mean complete removal. The other side treated any compromise whatsoever as a denial of The Heavenly Father and refused to consider anything.

  • Art_Vandelay

    The most passive-aggressive unveiling ceremony ever.

  • Tim Troy

    you idiots bitch about these things just for the sake of bitching………don’t give us this garbage that it “offends” you

    • Anat

      This isn’t about offense. The original suit was about obeying the law. Now it is about decency.

    • islandbrewer

      And you appear to whine for the sake of your persecution complex. Don’t give us this garbage that you’re “offended” by compliance with the law.

    • RobMcCune

      Why is it you idiots always whine about how anyone who disagrees with you is just offended and never bother to read the actual reasons. Don’t give us this garbage and learn to read.

    • Fentwin

      “you idiots bitch about these things just for the sake of bitching………don’t give us this garbage that it “offends” you(sic)”

      Follow that line to it’s end, thats where you’ll find a hook and a sinker.

    • vincent findley

      Got that right Tim!!

  • http://www.robinlionheart.com/ Robin Lionheart

    Actually, Cranston West doesn’t quite have a new mural yet. It’s literally going back to the drawing board, according to the Cranston Patch (“Typo! New West Mural Won’t Hang Quite Yet to Fix Spelling Errors”):

    “The new mural, which was dedicated at an invite-only ceremony on Saturday by members of the class of 1963, is a gesture to replace the infamous “prayer banner” that was removed from an auditorium wall last year after a federal judge ruled it was unconstitutional. But several spelling errors on “a couple of words” on the new murals means “nothing is going up for quite a while,” said Principal Thomas Barbieri.”

    • vincent findley

      Maybe, but my guess is they’re waiting for a case to be decided in early October by our highest court. that banner could possibly go back up.

      • islandbrewer

        Uh huh. Like we’re waiting to see the ACA totally destroy the American economy, too, right?

      • baal

        Yeah, that whole “nurture” banner sucked. How could we care about the kids instead of god?

  • Resistance is fruitful

    Just wondering. What is your god? Everyone has one. Is it money, self, science, government, the planet, sex? The list is literally infinite but the truth is that everyone has a god.

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      Well, if you’re going to define god that broadly, then I’m certainly a polytheist. My son. My wife. My bicycle. Coffee ice cream. Communing with cats.

      The list is literally infinite.

    • phantomreader42

      “Resistance is fruitful” babbled the following moronic nonsense:

      Just wondering. What is your god? Everyone has one. Is it money, self, science, government, the planet, sex? The list is literally infinite but the truth is that everyone has a god.

      No, that is NOT the truth. Despite what the voices in your head told you, not everyone has a god*. Your cult has had thousands of years to find a single speck of evidence that your imaginary god exists, and you have all failed miserably.
      *In fact, no one has a god, as they’re all imaginary.

      • Resistance is fruitful

        Everyone knows phantoms cannot read.
        No voices in the head. Just sarcasm from your weak soul. What kind of proof are you looking for? Sounds like the cookie cutter response. You must be low-level in your cult. Hang in there sport if you work hard one day they might let you design the new logo for your religion. A quick logo tip: don’t rip off marvel comics…. Okay I am finished stirring the pudding!

        • Guest

          The Phantom isn’t from Marvel, fail troll. Poor angrums, if you worshipped the right unicorn you might have been gifted with basic pop culture knowledge.

    • Anna

      Nope, no gods for me. I don’t worship anything, supernatural or non-supernatural.

    • islandbrewer

      Well, as you’re seeming to redefine “god” as meaning “things you like,” the question is kind of trivial and meaningless. My favorite ice cream is chocolate chip cookie dough. That that make it one of my gods?

      Further, if you insist on using words in a way that’s different from the way other people use them, you should at least be honest and say “my definition is totally different from everyone else’s.”

    • Fentwin

      The best offer I’ve heard of is from Pikkiwoki, the Papua New Guinean mud god.

      He’s offering a pig and all of the coconuts you can carry. Now, thats what I call a tangible payoff.

    • baal

      “What is your god? Everyone has one”
      Mine’s Cthulhu. You can read about him in his holy book and I’d like to invite you to the swamps with me this Saturday. I don’t think you’ll convert on the first visit but it’s a wonderful time and full of fellowship and song.

  • http://www.cautionchurchahead.com/ Steve Ahlquist

    Apparently the new banners have been taken down already, due to spelling errors. I kid you not.

    http://cranston.patch.com/groups/schools/p/typo-new-west-mural-wont-hang-quite-yet

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      Any idea what those are? Hard to see the image, and I (spelling incompetent as I am) can’t see anything wrong with Hemant’s transcription.

  • lancesackless

    Why the hell would the brat think she would be invited?!?!


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