Agree or Disagree: Altering Silent Night to remove Christ

Agree or Disagree: Altering Silent Night to remove Christ

Silent night, Holy night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin , mother and child
Holy infant so, tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Silent night, Holy night
Shepherds quake, at the sight
Glories stream from heaven afar
Heavenly, hosts sing Hallelujah.
Christ the Savior is born,
Christ the Savior is born.

Silent night, Holy night
Son of God, love’s pure light
Radiant beams from thy holy face
With the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord at thy birth
Jesus, Lord at thy birth.

These are the “official” lyrics for Silent Night. This is normally how it’s sung. 

At Kings Park Central School, they tried something different. During the school chorus, they decided to remove Christ from Silent Night. This offended many parents which sent cards and letters.

It caused Kings Park Superintendent Dr. Susan Agruso to write this letter of apology. 

Dear Parents and Community Residents,


The events of the last few days have served as a poignant reminder of how our actions can be hurtful to others. This time of year is marked by traditions that include concerts in our schools. Yet our joy at the sounds of musical compositions and melodic voices has been marred by a moment we wish we could take back.


Silent Night is a beautiful hymn that should have brought harmony to a school district that has seen its share of problems over the past year. The music is inspiring, the harmony is perfect for 10 year old voices, and the children performed it well. The rendition consisted of six lines – the first two lines in stanza one, the middle two lines in stanza two, and the last two lines from stanza one. No disrespect was intended by the district or staff. A good intention gone wrong has offended many and brought undesired attention to our district and community. I offer this explanation so you will know what happened, but it is not an excuse.


We teach our students to be understanding and respectful of all cultures and religions. Clearly, in this instance we fell short of our own expectations and have disappointed our families and community. 


In the New Year new procedures will be implemented to avoid a repeat occurrence. Please accept my sincerest apologies. There are so many accomplishments to celebrate in Kings Park and so much goodness to cherish in our community. I ask for your continued support as we work together to restore your confidence in us. 






Susan A. Agruso, Ph.D.


What do you think? Should they have apologized? Are you offended?


One response to “Agree or Disagree: Altering Silent Night to remove Christ

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