CHRISTMAS does not start at the office party, nor with the
traditional fight on EastEnders - it
starts with Christ. That is the message of this year's Christmas
advertising campaign run by the ecumenical charity
The campaign "Christmas Starts with Christ" is supported by the
Church of England, the Methodist Church, and the Bible Society,
among other groups. It will run from 1 December - "Christmas Starts
Sunday" - until Christmas Day.
Three different posters, each asking a different question, will
be displayed in public places. There are also three posters, in a
style similar to the national ads, which can be displayed by
individual churches, with slogans such as "Christmas starts with
our Tuesday night soup kitchen". The campaign will also produce
materials such as Christmas cards, and an Advent calendar, for
churches to use.
ChurchAds.net cited a number of surveys which it said suggested
that "51 per cent of people now say that the birth of Jesus is
irrelevant to their Christmas." It wanted to "reverse this
Posters published in previous years include "Bad hair day"
(Christmas 1996), which continued: "You're a virgin, you've just
given birth, and now three kings have shown up. Find out the happy
ending at a church near you"; and a "Che Guevara" poster with the
slogan "Meek. Mild. As if" (Easter 1999).