After telling children Santa Claus doesn’t exist, an Italian bishop has to apologize and admit that his red coat was used by Coca-Cola as an advertisement.

  • Bishop Antonio Stagliano outraged parents by saying Santa Claus does not exist
  • He spoke at a religious celebration that the famous Coca-Cola created a red costume for public promotion
  • The comments were later retracted by the Noto diocesan in Sicily.  

A Catholic Bishop has been forced to apologies to outraged parents after telling a group of children that Santa Claus does not exist.

Two weeks prior to Christmas, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Noto in Sicily maintained that Bishop Antonio Stagliano was not trying to endanger children’s dreams.

The Rev Alessandro Paolino posted, on Italian diocesan social media, that Mr Stagliano tried to emphasize the true meaning and story of St Nicholas. He was a bishop who distributed gifts to the poor but was persecuted and executed by the Roman emperor.

The Roman Catholic diocese of Noto in Sicily insisted that Bishop Antonio Stagliano did not mean to dash the dreams of youngsters two weeks before Christmas by saying Santa Claus does not exist

In Sicily, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Noto insists that Bishop Antonio Stagliano didn’t mean to derail children’s hopes two weeks prior to Christmas when he said Santa Claus doesn’t exist

According to Italian media reports, Mr Stagliano said that Santa didn’t exist during an Italian religious festival and that Coca-Cola created his red costume for public attention.

“First of all I want to express my sadness for this declaration which created disappointment in children and want you to know that Monsignor Stagliano intended things were very differently,” wrote Mr Paolino on the diocesan facebook page.

“We cannot destroy children’s imaginations, but we can draw useful examples that are good for the future,” he said.

“So Santa Claus” is a powerful image that conveys the value of generosity and sharing.

Italian news reports quoted Mr Stagliano as saying during a recent religious festival that Santa did not exist and that his red costume was created by Coca-Cola for publicity (stock photo)

Italian news reported that Mr. Stagliano stated that Santa was not real and his red dress was made by Coca-Cola to promote the festival (stock photo).

“But when this image loses it’s meaning, you can see Santa Claus (aka consumerism), the need to own, buy and sell again. After that, you must revalue it giving it a new meaning.

Although many parents in the diocese praised the effort of the bishop to concentrate on the Catholic meaning Christmas, some others criticized Mr. Stagliano as interfering in family traditions and celebrations and for crushing the spirits and early childhood experiences of those affected by the pandemic.

Mary Avola, one of the commenters, wrote, “You’re the proof that when it comes families, children, and family education, I don’t know a thing.”