I am writing in response to an article written by Chris Yandell on the 26th November 2019 regarding the animals stabbed to death in Penn Common in the New Forest.

I was extremely disappointed after reading this article, as I find that it targets and discriminates against Satanists as a religious group.

I feel that the article was not backed up by facts and the writer was severely misinformed.

Firstly, I would like to address the fact that the pentagrams painted on the sheep in the picture are the wrong way around to symbolize satanism.

That is the star that represents paganism, and the two religions are in no way connected.

While I am on the topic of satanic symbols, the ‘666’ symbols that were also painted on doors and signs were described as “the devil’s number” in the article, is in fact not related to satanism.

The Church of Satan states: “For we Satanists, numbers are just numbers. We are amused by Christians who are superstitiously afraid of this number.

"Historically, 666 is the name of the Emperor Nero reduced to its numerological value through Hebrew Gematria."

In the New Testament it is referred to as the number of the beast.

Satanists think this is quaint, but of no real value except for a record of the lengths people will go to force significance where none exists, objectively speaking”

My second point is that it is extremely rare for Satanists to perform rituals where there is an animal that is slaughtered as a sacrifice (which is normally only performed by extremists) but if this was the work of a Satanist, the animal would have had it’s throat slit clean and not stab wounds from what sounds like a messy and cruel knife attack.

Finally, as a Satanist myself, I feel that satanism is a very taboo subject and is often frowned upon as we are misunderstood and often perceived as “evil” and “devil worshipers” when this is not the case.

I could waste your time by including the nine statements of satanism but the purpose of this letter is not to preach, but to simply express my opinion and my feelings towards the article.

Name and address