Holiday Jesus display violates rules, homeowner association tells couple

Posted at 2:25 PM, Dec 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-26 09:40:17-05

(RNN) – A couple in Gettysburg, PA, has been asked by a neighborhood association to remove a decorative holiday display containing the name of Jesus from their front yard following a complaint from a neighbor.

The association said in an email to Mark and Lynn Wivell that a neighbor said the sign was offensive, according to a report in The Evening Sun. 

The association said the display didn’t adhere to HOA regulations spelling out guidelines for holiday decorations. The group feels the wooden display with the name Jesus spelled out in tinsel is a sign. 

The couple has extended lights from bushes behind the structure over the sides of the wood and put a manger scene under the name of Jesus.     

The decoration was put up Dec. 16 by Mark Wivell, the report says, adding that a second email from the association said that although the sign is related to the holiday, the “size, structure, and illumination of the physical sign are the accentuating factors generating the complaint,” a Dec. 18 email said.

All Christmas holiday decorations must be down by Jan. 15, and the Wivells plan to keep the Jesus display up until that date.

"I'm looking at this as a forum to promote what Christmas is all about," Wivell told The Evening Sun. "We wanted our neighbors to know how we feel. I don't want this to be about me though. I want it to be about the birth of Jesus."

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