SCRANTON, PA (WNEP/CNN) – Complaints about this year’s campus Christmas tree at a Pennsylvania university have permeated the student body.
Some University of Scranton students say a star on top and all the lights in the world can’t help it.
"At first, when I saw the tree, I'm not going to lie, I was a little bit disappointed," student Alec Sullivan said.
Students like Sullivan say the school set the bar high in previous years, and this tree pales in comparison.
The main complaint seems to be the tree’s small size. Students have even dubbed it Scranton’s “Charlie Brown Tree,” a title that’s making the rounds on social media.
"I'm actually a student officer, so I've heard from my other workmates that it was really big last year,” Simone Vanderlee said. “Since I'm a freshman, I don't really have much to compare it to, but it is a little bit sad that it's smaller this year."
But since this is all happening at a school, the president of the University of Scranton thought the Christmas tree controversy could be a teachable moment.
All the complaints about the tree prompted a campus-wide email from the president, Father Scott Pilarz, in which he reminded students at the Jesuit university: “Central to the message of Christmas is that God loves us unconditionally, with all of our imperfections.”
Pilarz also quoted Linus in his message: “Maybe this tree just needs a little love.”
He wrapped up his email with: “If there is any community that could love this tree, then it is ours.”
Still, Sullivan wasn’t quite won over.
"I think he has good intent with it, but on the other hand, I think that he wants a nicer tree too," he said.
But Sullivan thinks maybe students will eventually come around to accepting the “Charlie Brown Tree.”
"There's still the Christmas spirit with it. I think we can all rally together," he said.
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