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Bloomington Mayor Changes 'Good Friday' Name To 'Spring Holiday'

Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton's announcement to change the names of two holidays has sparked criticism from religious groups.

In a memo to city employees last week, Hamilton announced Good Friday will now be known as 'Spring Holiday' and Columbus Day will now be known as 'Fall Holiday.' The change will affect how the paid time-off days are described for city employees.

In a memo emailed to city employees, Hamilton says the move is designed to "better reflect cultural sensitivity in the workplace."

“We are terrifically proud of our diverse workforce at the City," Hamilton said in the memo. "That diversity makes us stronger and more representative of the public we proudly serve. These updated names for two days of well-merited time off is another way we can demonstrate our commitment to inclusivity.”

Columbus Day is set to mark when Christopher Columbus set foot in the Americas in 1492. Historians widely agree that he didn't actually discover America, though. Dozens of cities across the country have changed the name of Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day to give recognition to Native Americans.

Changing the name of Good Friday is striking a nerve with a lot of people, including the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. The group calls the move censorship of the Catholic church.

"Hamilton stuck his middle finger in the face of all Christians by taking his axe to Good Friday," said Catholic League President Bill Donohue in a statement. "Inclusivity is a ruse-it is a multicultural weapon used to foster intolerance of our Judeo-Christian heritage. In actual fact, Christians are being excluded by denying recognition of a central day in their religious calendar."

Read the complete statement from the Catholic League here

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