Pell blasts Betta Christmas ad as "inappropriate"
Cardinal George Pell has branded a TV advertisement depicting baby Jesus hurling back gifts to the wise men as "inappropriate".
He said it epitomises the commercialisation of Christmas.
The Daily Telegraph reports the commercial for electronic goods retailer Betta Electrical recreates the nativity scene, however it shows the infant Jesus throwing back the wise men's gifts while the words "Give a better gift" flash on the TV screen.
"The advertisement is interesting because it shows how commercialised Christmas has become," a spokesman for Pell said.
Sydney Anglican Bishop Glenn Davies also expressed his disdain of the "tacky and offensive" ad, saying it is "an exploitation of religious imagery which perverts the true meaning of Christmas."
"Obviously this company wants to get the divine seal of approval on their goods but I can't imagine it will help them sell anything."
Marketing manager for the retailer Julieanne Worchurst said the ad was meant to be "a tongue-in-cheek and humorous approach to the gift giving season" and will pull the ad if community outrage to the campaign grew.
Get a Betta ad, Christians say (Daily Telegraph, 19/12/07)
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19 Dec 2007