Wilkes Student Urinates on Church Steps

Hold the presses! It's happened again!

Urination really gets in the news when it's on a religious area, but forget all of the other urination in Wilkes-Barre that is not in toilets.

To start, I don't condone urinating on churches, church steps, or breaking the law by desecrating churches.

I'm sure I'm going to be somehow mentioned with this (update: I already have been).

This student, though, had no intention to defy or challenge religion, but the media and people interviewed are making it seem that way. This act was a case of public drunkenness.

"It's happened again in Wilkes-Barre. Someone has urinated on a place that people hold in religious regard. This time it's a church and once again it's a college student who stands accused.
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church holds weekend worship services after what many call a disgusting and despicable act. Someone urinated on the front church steps late Friday night."

It's quite funny how the media treats this as a normal occurrence that we're used to. As the article clarifies, the urinating was not directly on the church or any "object", but rather on steps. It's still desecration of venerated objects which is, under PA laws, a misdemeanor charge.

Police say 19-year-old Noah Svoboda of Wilkes-Barre was relieving himself in plain view when they caught him. An officer identified him by his Wilkes University ID. "Hearing that a person urinated on our church steps primarily is one of disappointment for that individual," said church co-pastor Peter Kuritz.

Wilkes and King's are now TIED in the epic "Who shall have more students urinating on church property?" race. The media and I are keeping count. Who shall be the victorious school in the River Street Urination Battle of the 2009-2010 semester? Sarcasm aside, people are already getting the facts wrong and mischaracterizing this as an anti-religious act:

Hearing about the incident was upsetting to the Good Shepherd's Director of Music Sandra Keator. She said, "I was immediately disgusted and actually a little bit angry that anybody could be so ignorant."

Young parishioners like 13-year-old Joey Siewell are also offended. He said, "I think it's just disrespectful to the church and to actually society by itself."

This incident comes just 1-month after a 22-year-old King's College student urinated on a nativity scene on Wilkes-Barre Public Square.

Responsibility in the alcohol department was obviously lacking for both students. Unfortunately, for Nathan Strawn and now this student, people and the media blow events like this way out of proportion and demonize. Other students who damage property and are arrested or fined because of alcohol aren't lambasted by the public...but when you add religion into the mix...

Some say this behavior shows a lack of family values. "They should have more respect," said parishioner Shirley Estus. "I think that's the whole thing with today's society. They have left God out of their lives. "

Shirley misses the point and makes a really uninformed comment here. Again, this has nothing to do with respect, religion, or the church, but rather alcohol/drunkenness.

A faith lesson that some say the suspect behind this latest incident needs to know. "To be respectful and to love each other and to try and take care of each other and that's something this young man obviously has a great deal to learn about," said Keator.

Again, people are missing the point. This young man merely needs to learn about responsible drinking, not some nonsense from a "faith lesson" (whatever that means).