Self-proclaimed Satanic Temple's after-school book club meeting at Lancaster library sparks protests

Leo Stallworth Image
Friday, September 8, 2023
Self-proclaimed Satanic Temple's after-school event sparks protests
A group called the Satanic Temple held an after-school book club meeting geared toward families and kids at a Lancaster library, drawing protesters.

LANCASTER, Calif. (KABC) -- A group that calls itself the Satanic Temple held an after-school book club meeting geared toward families and kids at a library in Lancaster, drawing protests from local residents.

One protester outside of the event on Thursday shouted, "Rebuke Satan in the name of Jesus Christ!"

But members of the Satanic Temple say they don't worship Satan.

"The Satanic Temple, we are about personal liberty and free rational inquires. We are not about worshiping the devil or anything like that. We're just trying to have fun and help the children have a good time," said Rene Grigori with the Satanic Temple.

Many of the protesters were of the Christian faith.

"We don't need the enemy here in Jesus' mighty name. We are representing Jesus Christ the lord and savior. We're not trying to have the enemy destroy this town. We got enough issues here. Rebuke Satan in the name of Jesus Christ," one protester said.

The Satanic Temple put out flyers encouraging families and their children to show up for their back-to-school night family community celebration.

"This is a club that we host at several schools throughout the United States. We're just having fun with the kids. They're doing arts and crafts and all kinds of fun stuff," Grigori said.

The Satanic Temple said they hoped more families would have shown up for the event.

"We've had a bunch of protesters so that may be detracting people," Grigori said.

"It's important for men and women and children of all faiths to come out here and stand up and speak the truth, the truth that Jesus Christ is our savior and that Satan is evil," said Mary Ann Beuchter, an area resident.

The Satanic Temple made it clear that the group is exercising its legal right to assemble and hold such an event.

Christians argue they only turned out to insure children understand the difference between Satan and Christ.

"They are representing Satan and satanic things that is trying to teach children in an after-school satanic club. That they are trying to recruit children. So we are here to reach, to teach and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ," said Cynthia Evans, an area resident.