Sorry, Roman Catholic diocese, but the bishop informed children that Santa Claus does not exist.
A Sicilian Roman Catholic diocese expressed regret that Bishop Antonio Stagliano informed children that Santa Claus does not exist.
"On behalf of the bishop, I express my regret for this proclamation, which has disappointed the small children, and wish to clarify that Monsignor Stagliano's intentions were quite different," communications director Rev. Alessandro Paolino wrote on the diocesan Facebook page.
According to Italian news media, Stagliano made the remarks during a religious celebration, when he also informed children that Santa's red and white attire was concocted as a marketing ploy by the Coca-Cola firm.
Paolino claimed that his colleague was attempting to bring attention to the actual meaning of Christmas and the narrative of the bishop St. Nicholas, who distributed gifts to the poor.
"We must not destroy children's imaginations, but rather use them to create positive examples for life," the apologetic Paolino stated.
He stressed that while Santa Claus is an efficient image for promoting charity and compassion, "when this image loses its meaning, when you view Santa Claus as materialism, the urge to acquire, buy, buy, and buy again, then it must be revalued by imbuing it with a new meaning."
Several diocese Facebook friends joined in, stating that it is critical to remind children that Christmas is about the birth of Jesus Christ. Others chastised the bishop for devaluing a holiday that means considerably more to children recovering from a pandemic.