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Christmas message runs afoul of sign ban


UPI News Service, 12/30/2010 

A Virginia man said he received a letter Christmas Eve from his homeowner's association ordering him to remove a "Happy Birthday Jesus" sign.

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Donald Henderson, 38, of Prince William County, said his Christmas decorations this year were comprised of a wreath on the door, a few lights on the front porch, an inflatable Mickey and Minnie and a sign reading, "Happy Birthday Jesus, Come Let Us Adore Him," The Washington Post reported Wednesday.

Henderson said the decorations were up for three weeks before the New Bristow Village management company sent him a letter Christmas Eve informing him the sign was a violation of a covenant banning all signs except for real estate and security placards.

Henderson said the letter gave him 15 days to comply and he plans to take down the sign Jan. 1, the day he usually takes down his Christmas display.

"What really bothered me was that they sent it on Christmas. I consider myself a man of faith. The sign shows to all of our neighbors what Christ means to us," Henderson said.

A spokeswoman for the management company said religion had nothing to do with the decision.

"The content of the sign is not why the letter was sent," she said. "The letter was ill-timed, and for that we absolutely apologize."


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