The Dutch Council of State is unequivocal: This kind of “Jesus saves” signs has to be removed.
“Jesus saves” reads the message marked out in tiles on the roof of a farmhouse in the countryside east of Rotterdam.
Two years ago the local Giessenlanden council ruled that the message in massive white letters broke its rules on the appearance of buildings.
The council ordered the farm’s evangelical owner, Joop van Ooijen, to remove the letters under penalty of a fine. Determined to stand up for his right to freedom of speech, Mr Van Ooijen appealed to the Council of State, which acts as an appeal court in disputes between citizens and government.
The appeal judge has now sided with the local authority’s committee that makes the rules on building aesthetics. The massive big white letters are against the rules because they spoil the view. And the council is quite within its rights to enforce its rules on “extravagance in the appearance” of buildings.
The local council has always asserted that Mr Van Ooijen’s message had nothing to do with their decision.
In fact, the local coalition includes executives from the Christian Democrats and the orthodox protestant SGP party.
“Mr Van Ooijen knows very well that the content has nothing to do with it,” the mayor Els Boot told Dutch daily de Volkskrant.
“There are two Christian parties in our executive. A lot of people here embrace the content of the text.”
Mr Van Ooijen has no intention of taking the latest decision lying down. He’s now determined to take his case to the European Court of Human Rights.
Source: Radio Netherlands Worldwide.
Take a look at this video link.
What makes this story special, is that the Radical Christians in Van Ooijen congregation embraces Messianic Judaism.
People pray with Jewish prayer shall over their head, and men are even seen to be using kipa.
And the fellowship meets on the Biblical Sabbath, that is Friday evening or Saturday morning.