Christian movie studio donates $25K to restore vandalized Ten Commandments monument in Arkansas

Christian entertainment and television studio Pure Flix has donated $25,000 to be used for the restoration of the Ten Commandments monument in Arkansas that was vandalized last month.

(REUTERS / STRINGER / Steve Barnes)A statue of the Ten Commandments is seen after it was installed on the grounds of the state Capitol in Little Rock, Arkansas, U.S. June 27, 2017.

Pure Flix, the company behind "God's Not Dead" and "The Case for Christ," has donated $25,000 to the American History and Heritage Foundation, the nonprofit responsible for the Ten Commandments monument in Arkansas. The entertainment firm said the pledge was its way of giving back to the community, Religion News Service reported.

"We hope our donation will contribute to the costs to rebuild this beautiful landmark," said Pure Flix COO Steve Fedyski in a statement. "Little Rock — and Arkansas in general — have been very hospitable to us and we want give back to the community in a meaningful way."

Authorities said 32-year-old Michael Tate Reed ran into the six-foot Ten Commandments monument on June 28, less than 24 hours after it was put up on the grounds of the Arkansas state Capitol. The suspect also recorded the incident on his cellphone and posted the video on Facebook. Reed was charged with first-degree criminal mischief, defacing an object of public interest, and criminal trespassing, USA Today detailed.

The installation of the Ten Commandments monument, which was privately funded, came two years after the matter was voted upon by lawmakers. State Sen. Jason Rapert, who led the efforts to have the statue installed, thinks there are other groups aside from Christians that appreciate it. He also pointed out that the American law was based on the commandments.

"I think there are more people than Christians that are happy because frankly, it is the mosaic code, which obviously was Hebrew, Jewish," said Sen. Rapert. "So when you think about the Ten Commandments, the Ten Commandments is not something that's inherently Christian."

However, the Ten Commandments monument drew flak from many Arkansas residents who think that it is offensive for the non-Christians. The American Civil Liberties Union said it will file a federal lawsuit against the installation of the statue, saying it unconstitutionally supports a particular religion.

Nevertheless, Sen. Rapert said they expect the Ten Commandments monument to be completely rebuilt in a few months. He also said the foundation has received $55,000 in donations for the reconstruction of the statue, and the money will be used to add barriers that will protect the structure from future acts of vandalism.

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