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Sep 29, 2016 4:25 PM

NH nun's letter ignites controversy over gay pride flags in Rochester


A controversy has ignited over the city of Rochester’s decision to hang gay pride rainbow flags on public property.

“They're promoting a religious view on the whole city which the city might not really be endorsing,” said Sister Mary Rose Reddy of Rochester.

Sister Reddy doesn’t believe the city should have hung rainbow flags along Main Street in recognition of Rochester’s gay pride month. She wrote about it in a letter to editor in the Union Leader.

“I believe the foundation of society is the family of a man and woman and to promote homosexuality is to promote the undermining of the foundation of marriage in my perception,” she added.

The flags were hung before the city's first ever gay pride event on Sept. 10.

Controversy arose when some residents wanted the flags taken down before Sept.11 commemorations the following day.

“It's offensive to me," said James Jacobs of Rochester. "They said they would hang there one day.”

Gay pride event organizer Matt Wyatt told NH1 News that, “Anyone that uses 911 to mask bigotry should be ashamed of themselves. Next year it will be bigger and gayer.”

Though city workers have removed rainbow flags on Main Street, some store owners are still displaying the flags they were given.

Record Store owner Todd Berrios says he plans to continue displaying the rainbow flag in his store.

“I think the flags should be everywhere,” he said after calling gay pride month a “happy celebration."

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