Thursday, April 1, 2010

Ironic faith

This comes from Riazat Butt's blog on the Guardian web site:
St Matthew's in Auckland describes itself as a "progressive Anglican church with a heart for the city and an eye to the world". That's an understatement.
Last Christmas it offended and intrigued in equal parts with a Saatchi-designed billboard that depicted a deflated Joseph in bed with a disappointed Mary and the caption "Poor Joseph. God was a hard act to follow". Its attempt to provoke was more successful than expected and the poster was promptly attacked with a knife.
For Easter, the most important festival in the Christian calendar, the people at St Matthew's have come up with another ruse to get people engaging with their faith. This billboard shows Jesus nailed to a crucifix, thinking to himself: "Well this sucks. I wonder if they'll remember anything I said". The vicar at St Matthew's, Glynn Cardy, says the poster is a reminder that "Easter is about more than a rugged cross, a supernatural miracle, or a chocolate bunny".

I guess this is a response to Christians who take Holy Scripture literally - to the point of trying to calculate the volume of the blood that will be spilled when X billion individuals are slaughtered at Armageddon. The ad agency which designed pro bono at least one of the billboards apparently thought they were performing a public service – or at least pretended to.