New Zealand Catholics outraged by South Park episode
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- The Catholic Church in New Zealand is lodging an official complaint with the country’s Broadcasting Standards Authority after a television channel aired an episode of South Park, which depicted a statue of the Virgin Mary menstruating.

Chief Operating Officer of C4, Rick Friesen, apologized for any offence caused by the controversial “Bloody Mary” episode, which aired Feb. 22. During the broadcast, a group of about 400 Catholics prayed the rosary and sang Marian hymns outside C4’s studio.

The station received dozens of complaints over the episode, but did not uphold any based on the country’s Television Code. However, Friesan admitted, the channel misjudged the number of people who would be offended.

The COO said the channel has "detected a shift in the public's perspective on matters of a religious nature” and has since “reviewed [its] internal processes for dealing with religious programs, particularly in relation to religious satire," reported the New Zealand Catholic. The station has decided not to rebroadcast the episode.

A similar situation developed in the United States a few months ago, when the program was aired Dec. 7. Comedy Central, which broadcast the show, also decided to cancel scheduled repeats of the episode.

Catholic Communications national director Lyndsay Freer questioned Friesen’s claim that his channel has "detected a shift in the public's perspective."

"What they really mean is that they have learned the hard way that the public will not put up with arrogant denigration of groups of their fellow citizens simply because the media perceives that it can get away with it."

In February, the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference asked CanWest Media, C4’s parent company, not to screen the episode. They said the decision to air it was “arrogant” and “cynical” and urged Catholics to consider boycotting the station and their advertisers.

“Press freedom is not a license to incite intolerance or to promote hatred or derision based on religion, race or gender,” they said in a Feb. 14 letter. “We believe that while most of us have a sense of humor, there are some things that go beyond the bounds.”

Friesen said he is confident the Broadcasting Standards Authority will not uphold any complaint from the Catholic Church because he does not believe the program breached any broadcasting codes.

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google

Featured Videos

Cardinal Luis Tagle to Pope Francis
Cardinal Luis Tagle to Pope Francis
Pope Francis in the Philippines: Manila Welcomes the Pope
Pope Francis in Sri Lanka: Highlights
Pope Francis in Sri Lanka: Interview with Cardinal Ranjith
Pope Francis in SriLanka: Inter-religious Faith Meeting
Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Family thrilled to see Pope Francis in Istanbul
Syrian Refugee, Sara, 14, Before Meeting Pope
Ebola orphans thousands of children in West Africa
One year after Haiyan: Philippines rebuilds homes, lives
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day

Liturgical Calendar

January 25, 2015

Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mk 1:14-20


Daily Readings

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »


Homily of the Day

Mk 1:14-20