The Italian Church apologizes after the bishop tells the children that Santa Claus does not exist – sport news football96

A Roman Catholic diocese in Sicily has apologized to its parents after their bishop reportedly told a group of children that Santa Claus does not exist.

At a religious event last week, Bishop Antonio Staglianò also said that Coca-Cola’s red Santa Claus costume was chosen for advertising, Italian media report.

The comments made the parents angry.

In an apology, Pastor Alessandro Paolino from the Diocese of Noto said the bishop tried to emphasize the true meaning of Christmas.

He also said the comments were aimed at highlighting the story of Saint Nicholas, who was the first inspiration for the Santa Claus character and is known for giving gifts to the poor.

“First of all, on behalf of the Bishop, I would like to express my regret at this statement, which has caused disappointment among the little ones, and I would like to emphasize that the intentions of Monsignor Stagliano were very different,” said Pastor Paolino in a post on the Diocesan Facebook page.

Pastor Paolino, director of communications for the Diocese of Noto, said the bishop had asked the children to “reflect on the meaning of Christmas” and said the date for consumption had become known.

“If we all, young or old, can learn a lesson from the figure of Santa Claus, it is this: to ‘create’ and ‘consume’ fewer gifts and to share more ‘gifts’,” the statement said.

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In an interview with La Repubblica newspaper, the bishop said that he did not tell the children that Santa Claus does not exist, but that it is necessary “to distinguish what is real from what is not”.

“It turns out a real fact that Christmas no longer belongs to Christians,” he said (in Italian). “The Christmas atmosphere between lights and shopping has replaced Christmas.”

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