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Controversial Lothian Statue's Future Will Be Discussed

Patch logo Patch 6/16/2020 Kristin Danley-Greiner
a man riding a horse drawn carriage: The statue of Benjamin Welch Owens recently was spray-painted with the word "shame." © Shutterstock The statue of Benjamin Welch Owens recently was spray-painted with the word "shame."

LOTHIAN, MD — Cruel. Dangerous. Those are just two words used by Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman to describe a Confederate statue standing outside Mt. Calvary Anglican Church in Lothian since 1999.

"We are better than that," Pittman said on social media after learning about the statue.

The statue of Benjamin Welch Owens recently was spray-painted with the word "shame." Pittman and others are calling for the statue to be taken down.

“For a Christian church to display a huge bronze statue honoring Benjamin Welch Owens is a curious twist on the teachings of Jesus Christ,” Pittman wrote in an editorial published in the Capital Gazette on Sunday. “I hope they remove it.”

The statue of Owens is privately owned and was erected with the help of one of Owens’ descendants. He served in the Confederate Maryland artillery unit during the Civil War.

Mt. Calvary Vector R.H. Tregenza told the Capital Gazette that the vestry must discuss the statue’s possible removal and the church’s bishop also must be consulted before any action can be taken. Owens had attended Mt. Calvary, which was built in 1875, and he died in 1917. Mt. Calvary is described on its website as a small family-friendly church in the Anglican/Episcopal tradition.

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