A PR Fiasco

Sunday dawned, shops opened and the pit of hell failed to open up. What did open up, however, is a very obvious position within the Church’s PR department (does it even have one?)

I’ve already said this and I’ll say it again. The Church needs to get itself a good PR strategist. Then perhaps it will stop with the wildly patronizing statements it is so fond of issuing every month or so and which only serve to prove the point that the Church itself constantly denies. The point being that, as a structured organization that expects to be treated as major stake-holder in our society, it remains hopelessly out of touch with the current collective moods and needs of Joe and Jane Bloggs.

I won’t even mention the astounding “IVF is akin to abortion” declaration – the ethical and moral ramifications of that statement are simply too wide to be tackled in one post.

Let’s take its latest – and equally astounding – missive to government instead: the Church, we were informed, was “unhappy with Sunday shops plan”. I could almost hear the stentorian tones of censorship emanating from the news report.

Rea more about it here.



  1. Andrew Stephenson says:

    Finally, we can start to call ourselves modern and civilized by allowing tradesmen/women to open there shops on Sundays and Public Holidays. We live in such a busy time, where we struggle to stay afloat of our bills and dues, that this is a step in the right direction. Both retailer and client stand to benefit, and as the church goes; I thought they had an open door policy 24 hours a day, as so we were thought that god is reachable always and everywhere, so how would they like the authorities to block they rights and freedoms?

    Its time for the church to get over its self and let people be truely free to decide and live the way they preach their god allows us. I have no gripe with Christainity but only the so called Christains who are the first to point fingers (btw this goes for all religions as, its all a big scam).

  2. joshua says:

    Having retail stores open on Sundays has obvious positive ramifications for commerce in general and is more inline with modern customer behaviour trends. On the other hand, you cannot ignore the impact on people that, all of a sudden, will no longer have the possibility of enjoying sundays with families and kids. (And don’t even try to tell me that shop owners will simply hire more people willing to work on Sundays — we know that will not be the general trend).

    Personally, I work long hours all week, study for an MBA and travel for work on a regular basis. But I can’t imagine not having Sundays to spend with my wife and daughter!

    Another argument that gets bounced around is that shop owners (especially self-employed) are free to not operate on Sundays. I’m a marketer by profession; if your competition opens on Sundays, you have no choice but to follow suit in order to not loose customer loyalty.

    I’m not linking this argument to religious beliefs and customs — although they are rightly so important for quite a few people. Maybe the Church does need to pull up its socks in terms of PR, but it is too easy to dismiss an argument simply based on its source — as badly argued as it might be.

    So, maybe – just maybe – rather than taking rush decisions simply because we have an election around the corner, more thorough and encompassing assessments should be undertaken before arriving at conclusions that havious obvious commercial, social and personal implications.

  3. Mario Schembri Wismayer says:

    I agree with Joshua in principle. The Church was pointing out the social ramifications of allowing businesses to open on Sundays. Staff will now be forced to work on Sunday, which was the only day in the week reserved for private relaxation and family time. Oh and for worship (Remember that, worship? And keeping the Sabbath Holy? And avoiding all unnecessary work…?) The main thing is that now we ‘can start to call ourselves modern and civilized’ because we will now be in a position to shop until we literally drop as we sacrifice everything at the altar of Mammon, regardless of the cost. The Church took the position it did precisely because of the effect that this decision would have on the family lives of Maltese people. Out of touch forsooth! The Church is a sign of contradiction in the world and often what She has to say may sound unpleasant but is the truth. And She has to announce that truth, regardless of whether that truth is popular or not…

  4. Sarah says:

    Can’t agree with you more, though I must say that in my parish, priests speak about intolerance and racial discrimination all the time, while some have taken that stand you’re calling for… Maybe not during a demonstration, but I’ve heard some doing so from the pulpit. On a separate note, when did the Church express worry about the evils of inter-cultural marriage? Was it Maltese priests? I’d like to know more :)