Some Rejected Catholic Recruiting Posters

Today, I’m excited to report that I have some breaking news to share with Daylight Atheism readers.

From a highly placed anonymous source inside the Vatican, I’ve received a letter containing proofs for a new advertising campaign that the Roman Catholic church has been developing for the past several years. The ultimate goal was to run these ads on billboards throughout the world. The bishops in charge described these ads as “the most compelling argument ever made for Holy Mother Church’s supreme moral authority and sanctity”, and anticipated that they would provoke millions of conversions to Catholicism in the first few days after they went up.

However, due to recent news events and the perceived sensitivity of some of the unfortunate facts thus disclosed, the ad campaign was delayed and ultimately dropped. The concept art and proofs, most of which were already finished, were shelved in a secret Vatican archive. They’ve never been seen by the world – until now. It’s my privilege to be able to show them to you. I think you’ll agree with me that they do indeed make a convincing case!

Inspiration: here, here and here. Image via Wikimedia Commons.

Inspiration here. Original copyright unknown.

Inspiration here. Image via, original copyright John Carrington/Savannah Morning News.

Inspiration here. Image via Wikimedia Commons, released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license.

Inspiration here. Image via Wikimedia Commons.

Image via Wikimedia Commons.

Creative Commons License

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About Adam Lee

Adam Lee is an atheist writer and speaker living in New York City. His new novel, City of Light, is available in paperback and e-book. Read his full bio, or follow him on Twitter.

  • DSimon

    Infallibly delicious!

  • Mathew Wilder

    ^Can’t top that^ llol

  • Thumpalumpacus

    I’ve always liked DA because it avoided the LulzCat mentality.

  • Juan Felipe

    9 days late???

  • ArtyB

    Advertising? When did churches (catholic church) start to advertise? Last I heard, Jesus wanted his followers to go out there and proselytize not buy space on billboards to bring in new members. Well, desperate times calls for desperate measures. In fact, I don’t think they need to advertise since all the pedophile priests are doing a great job of advertising the dirty secrets of the catholic church.

  • rakista

    TY for the laughs. Might as well laugh while they are still a threat to progress everywhere.

  • "anon"

    A hah. A hah. A hah. It is funny because they molested children. A hah. “A cat is good too” and other unrelated anon-type comments for an anon-type post. Insert meme and variant demotivational here. A hah. Mudkipz.

    I don’t wish to press the point, but I don’t think Daylight is the best place to host demotivationals such as these. They are true statements, yes, and the comment board regularly has people like myself, OMFG, and Thump, and others, saying far worse to anyone religious who’d touch the board, but placing it in image-macro format seems more offensive to me than simply talking about it, whether in making light of it, or simply stating facts. Many bible-types come in here posting about how respectful the site and regulars seem, despite it offending their over-delicate sensibilities, and I wouldn’t want to see that cred lost.

    Still they made me smile, yes, but I don’t think they fit with the theme inherent in the site. Maybe somewhere like Geeks of Silicon Valley or Atheist Cartoons, but note here. Such is my opinion, of course, I’m sure others are out there too. I realize writing what basically amounts to essays every few days is incredibly tough, so making a few image macros might be a bit easier (I’d imagine), but it wasn’t my favourite post of yours by any means. Sorry. (Some others seem to agree, with the April Fools comment and the avoidance comment, so I guess while my reasoning my differ, I am not alone. That’s the nice thing about this site, you’re never alone.)

  • D

    Thumper, I don’t think you understand: lolcats are in our internets, taking over our culture. I, for one, find the “Catholic Charities” one to be particularly on-point. I mean, it makes me laugh, but for bad reasons, which are entirely the fault of the Catholic church.

    Rakista, as a good friend once said to me: “Learn to laugh at your problems, and you’ll never run out of things to laugh about.”

  • Kevin
  • Maynard

    Shorter “anon”: Ebon, stop having a personality. It makes atheists seem almost human.

  • Thumpalumpacus

    I don’t disagree with their points, D. It’s just that they’re out-of-place, in my mind, like going to the library and finding the circus.

    Also, Maynard, I don’t think “anon” mentioned anything about Ebon being representative of atheists. Nice straw-man.

  • Wednesday

    Eh, I feel a bit conflicted about these. It’s fine to vent our frustrations with the Catholic Church, and laughter is powerful, but I also feel like putting them in posters on a site like Daylight Atheism is a bit like reducing serious, well-thought-out arguments to pithy, insulting bumper stickers. But, hey, Ebon’s site, Ebon’s decisions what to post. And Ebon’s decision when he’s had enough Serious Business. :)

    Also, I think the Mother Theresa one could have been _way_ more pointed about the problems with the order she founded than it is. =P

  • Ebonmuse

    Hi folks,

    I realize this isn’t the sort of thing I usually post, and I understand if some people feel it doesn’t fit with the tone of DA. To be honest, this was mainly born out of anger and frustration. Lately, it seems like every week we hear some new story about the church’s complicity; and every week, just when it seems the worst of it must have come out, we find out something that’s worse still.

    Could you even have imagined back in January, when the Pope reinstated an outright racist and Holocaust denier, that that would be possibly the least offensive thing they’ve done so far this year? I would have thought it would be hard to top that. But then in addition to that, we hear about Catholic schools expelling the children of gay couples; about Catholic hospitals promising to ignore their patients’ advance care directives; about Catholic charities that would rather see children remain wards of the state than abide by anti-discrimination laws; about Catholic bishops setting political criteria for who’s allowed to receive communion. They shelter child rapists, worm their way into the government to protect themselves from liability, ask their parishioners for money to cover the leftover legal bills, and then protect and promote the people who sheltered the child rapists – culminating in one of those people being declared Pope. And when we point all of this out, their apologists hit the airwaves to whine about how they‘re the ones being victimized and unjustly persecuted.

    There comes a point when outrage reaches a limit, when words fail me. Satire is the most effective weapon left at that point. Yes, I acknowledge I aimed to hit below the belt with this post, and this sort of thing isn’t going to be a regular feature on DA. But at least on this occasion, it was the best way for me to express how I felt. They deserve the insult, they deserve the mockery, and they deserve the accusation.

  • Wednesday

    Thank you, Ebon, for explaining where you’re coming from here – frustration and anger, rather than light-hearted joking. Did I miss those “inspiration” links associated with the pictures before? If I did, I apologize – because they make your motivation here a lot more clear.

  • Zietlos

    Yes, those inspiration links were there when it started. I was “anon”, by the by, just the name seemed more fitting within the realm of the article at the time, for reasons explained in that post, but since this is equally as anon, there’s no deeper meaning to it.

    It just seemed, as many (including Ebon himself) pointed out, out of place. Like the “kittens of the sea” articles on PETA’s website which basically ruined its credibility last year despite the original intent; this didn’t “look” right on here. But I do wish to reiterate, I can understand the feelings behind it all. Theresa was a bastard in life and honored for it, Rat-singer becoming Pope Sidious XXX after all those crimes and then continuing the charade, the gay rights manifesto… The world is not in a pretty place…

    …But if you want to think about it in a different way, this could be a great opportunity: All pedos now know that the CathChurch will protect pedos to their best extent (which is a lot). So, simply put all priests/bishops on a watchlist, rootkit their PCs, tap their phones, and check on their kids/nieces/nephews once in a while (if they have them, some do), since you know that’s where they’re going to gather. I mean, being a publicly declared atheist gets you put on a number of watchlists in some countries, as does being Islamic, so religious position seems like an acceptably valid criteria to segregate potential criminals by. It’s like leaving poisoned food out for rats. I say we Save the Children: those bishops are terrorists (in the purest sense of the word, they actually are).

    You know what’s almost funny? Here’s the news I’ve heard in the last 3 months about the oft-portrayed-by-media-as-evil religions: Scientology: Nothing. Not one article. Islam: Canadian imams are trying to stop extremist attacks. Jehova’s Witnesses: Nothing (besides on this site). Wicca/NewAge: Nothing. FSM: Nothing. It’s like the religions are so bad they need to take turns ruining the world out of some professional courtesy. In fact, this inspired me to make my own one, but I can’t upload it anywhere since it would be taken down in a flash for being inflammatory, but a little picture of Xenu with the caption “Scientology: Suddenly not as bad as Christianity”.

    …But you forgot the one about the lesbian prom fiasco, which while perhaps not as bad as the others by some standards, perhaps we’ve just become accustomed to such hate and injustice that we need greater amounts?

    And Maynard: Ebon has lots of personality in many of his posts, and if your criteria for being human is solely based upon the ability to make image-macros, which is what you implied as it is the only protest I made about the post, then I condemn you back to the /b/owels of 4chan. Back! The power of logic compels you! *holds out Darwinfish*

  • Steve Bowen

    To be honest, this was mainly born out of anger and frustration.

    I have some sympathy with this. As Thump said here in response to a comment of mine, there is no shortage of “news” but few creative ways to react to it.
    I too found this post a little out of context (funny though Ebon, definitely funny in a wry sort of way)but I’m not sure there is any other sane response given that the edifice that is the Catholic Church will just keep shrugging this off. If any of us are around in a century or so, I wouldn’t mind betting we’ll see history re-written with the Church as the victim, not the children.

  • Ergo Ratio

    Well as long as the Pope forgives the molested children for their sins, it’s all okay.

  • KShep

    I understand why some might see this as a diversion from the norm here, but like Ebon said, the outrage has reached its limit. These bastards are committing serious crimes, destroying lives, and shattering families, right out in the open, and daring anyone to do something about it. What’s a frustrated observer to do? These assholes deserve far more than any mockery we might hurl their way.

    Someone needs to alert PZ Myers to this post. He’d surely love it. I would, but I’m not registered, and really don’t need to be.

  • Thumpalumpacus

    I disagree, Steve. The infiltration of the Web into parts of the world where it wasn’t present even 15 years ago means that not only will these stories keep coming to light without being ast-upon by local authorities fearful of a powerful local Church — it also means that these stories will reach into the consciousness of doubters we may never have imagined existed at all.

    I think we are seeing strains on the dam. The flood will come. How can we accelerate it, is my question?

  • Steve Bowen

    I think we are seeing strains on the dam. The flood will come. How can we accelerate it, is my question?

    If you are correct, and I sincerely want you to be, then spreading it around is the answer. The beauty of satire as exemplified on this post is that although you can condemn it, you can’t ignore it.
    It used to be a characature of Americans that they “didn’t get satire”. I never bought into that. Any nation that can produce a Lenny Bruce “got” satire somewhere, somehow, even if it was just a hip elite. However, U.S satirical media is about as sophisticated as it gets these days, and you may be right; this medium could be the crack in the edifice.

  • Thumpalumpacus

    My objection isn’t to satirizing religion; Lord knows I’ve done that enough. It is, perhaps, that I’ve become accustomed to this site as a refuge from horseplay, and dislike seeing such.

    I will shut up now. :)

  • Robster

    Really really wish the vatican would put ‘em up. Given their apparent limited intelligence, proven by their silly stone age beliefs, they would probably fail to see the joke.

  • Jessalynn

    Yes. I am Catholic. And you people are acting like playground bullies. Way to go. *applause* You are doing NOTHING to promote peace or save humanity. You are feuling the fire of hatred. I’ll have you know that the Catholic Church is the LARGEST contributer to charities in the world. We are the largest relief organization on Earth with the most hospitals. I hope you are proud that you are sitting on your little computers typing away your feelings. Do you not think that we were outraged too when those priests molested our children? But do you honestly think that EVERYONE is a good person? There will always be bad seeds, unfortunately. And how childish is it that you judge the largest religion in the world based on a few bad apples. Shame on you. It’s sad when a fifteen year old knows better than the adults that created and read this website :) Oh and I’ll say (and do) this because I know it really, really, annoys you: “I’ll pray for you” ;) haha

  • OMGF

    And you people…

    You people? What do you mean, “You people?”

    …are acting like playground bullies.

    Wait, what? The Catholic Church engages in coverups of child abuse, discrimination against gays, and a host of other evils, but we’re the bullies for pointing out their inhuman and immoral practices and stances? Nice religious privilege you got there.

    You are doing NOTHING to promote peace or save humanity.

    Well, by criticizing the church we are helping to save humanity from predatory priests. But, more seriously, we are promoting reason and human values, which does more to promote peace and help humanity than what the church does. How is shielding child rapists from justice helping humanity? How is fighting against equal rights for gays and women helping humanity? C’mon.

    You are feuling the fire of hatred.

    By pointing out the crimes and hatred of the Catholic Church? If you criticize the KKK, does that mean you are “fueling the firest of hatred?”

    I’ll have you know that the Catholic Church is the LARGEST contributer to charities in the world.

    Citation needed.

    We are the largest relief organization on Earth with the most hospitals.

    Citation needed.

    Do you not think that we were outraged too when those priests molested our children?

    No, I don’t think you are sufficiently outraged enough, especially considering that here you are defending them.

    And how childish is it that you judge the largest religion in the world based on a few bad apples.

    A few bad apples? It goes to the top. It was the top hierarchy that has shielded child rapists and facilitated their crimes. And, what does the size of the religion have to do with anything?

    Shame on you.

    Shame on you for defending child rape.