I have lived in Austin since I was 13 years old. We moved to Cedar Park (just north of Austin) in April of 1997, when I was in 7th grade. My mom had gotten a new job, and actually moved down a couple of months before my sister and I. We stayed behind with my grandma so my mom could get the house set up, and we could finish out our school year, since she had to move in March, and we would be out of school in May. Well after a month of wanting to know what it was like, I decided that I wanted to move too. That way I had a month to get to know people, and make some friends before the new school year started. I didn’t want to be the “New Girl” on the first day of 8th grade.
I have lived here for almost 15 years, and I couldn’t imagine growing up anywhere else. We moved from a small town in East Texas called Athens. A town where you know everyone, and they all know your business…sometimes before you do. It is a close knit community, with many Churches and some of the sweetest people you will ever meet. But recently Athens has been in the news.
Athens is the County Seat of Henderson County, and for as long as I can remember the courthouse lawn has been decorated for many holidays. Easter, Christmas, New Years, and others. Well it seems this year someone has a problem with the Nativity Scene. The same Nativity Scene that has been on display every Christmas since I, or even my Mom for that fact, can remember. Up until now there has NEVER been a problem with this display. No one has complained. It’s gone up, gone down, and people have gotten on with their lives.
This year a Malakoff resident decided to complain. This person is an atheist, and contacted the Freedom From Religion Foundation in Wisconsin. They claim that the Nativity Scene is “offensive”. WHAT?? Offensive, really?? What’s offensive to me is that someone could find negative and hate in something so pure. Something that for many people means a lot. Here is a link to YouTube, and one of the many videos posted on the issue. This particular clip is from Fox News.
I personally think the Nativity Scene should be on display, and I know a lot of people agree with me. Athens residents or not. I say keep the Nativity Scene up. Keep it on display for all to see. People get lost in the hustle and bustle of Christmas, and tend to forget the true meaning. The Nativity serves as a reminder. Helps to bring things back into focus. Lets you know that there is something “Bigger” out there, and it’s not just about what fancy gifts you get for your loved ones. It’s REALLY about the loved ones. I hope you all remember that this year. I know this hoopla in Athens has really helped me to do so. To forget about not being able to buy everyone gifts, or be able to make the perfect cookies. Reminded me just to focus on the time spent with the ones I love!