I received some new information on the problem of the vandalism of many, many crucifixes at the St Cloud Hospital. It turns out that CentraCare/SCH has been monitoring this situation closely. For the last two years there have been well over 100 crucifixes destroyed. (Keep in mind however that this issue goes back a number of years prior to this, so the actual number is far higher)
Last week there was a closed door meeting between the hospital and two members of the local Somali community. One of the members is an elder. He offered an apology on behalf of the Somali community and $50 restitution. Talk about arrogance. These crucifixes are not cheap by any means. Hospital security was there in case things got out of hand.
One of the spiritual advisors at the hospital is a retired lieutenant colonel who served in Afghanistan. He’s none too pleased with the situation along with several members of hospital security. The hospital did not want the police involved, which caused further aggravation. It was mentioned that if this were done in a mosque, it would be labeled a hate crime. In any event, all evidence points to a Somali employee(s) of the hospital as being the culprit. To add insult to injury is the fact that the day after this meeting, another crucifix was destroyed. The hospital wants this subject swept under the rug quickly and quietly.
What this means is that the Somali community is now further emboldened. Central Minnesota’s largest employer has basically given them a free pass to do whatever they wish without fear of repercussions.