The authorities granted the group permission after much delay.

The County-City Building in South Bend, Indiana greets visitors through a holiday sign which reads “Oh come all ye faithless.” The other side of the sign reads “Even Heathens Celebrate the Season!” The celebratory notice was paid for by Northern Indiana Atheists. The Northern Indiana Atheists are a non-profit created to fight any violation of church and state. The organization also defends the rights of atheists.

The display is kept in such a place where it would be highly visible. A number of windows nearby allow sunlight to illuminate the sign. The reasoning behind this sign, as per Northern Indiana Atheists, is to make sure the government continues to remain neutral during the December holiday season. This is important as religious groups display multiple Christmas Nativity scenes in the building during the December month. According to the non-religious non-profit, if religious displays are permissible for one group, then people belonging to other faiths or no faith must have equal access as well. The Northern Indiana Atheists organization has claimed to have submitted its request to the Board of Commissioners in the county to hold this display a year before, but approval was not granted. According to the non-profit's president, Troy Moss, the display was installed on a Friday as Sunday would be the beginning day of Hanukkah. He wished a happy holiday to everyone in the community.

Moss said their request was at first ignored. Northern Indiana Atheists members then made a number of phone calls and learned that an attorney is reviewing their request. The state government in the latter days of August requested an image of the display which the non-profit wanted to put up. The authorities made no objections after the submission of the image.

Andy Kostielney, the County Commissioner President, pointed out the decision to allow the atheist group to install a sign was a simple one. He added that Northern Indiana Atheists were not the first one to ask and receive permission to set up non-religious displays, pointing out that if the authorities allowed one, they would naturally allow others as well.


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