Priests protest corporate sponsorship for WYD

A group of 120 Spanish priests have criticised the church for “giving in to temptation” by accepting corporate sponsorship for this year’s World Youth Day program and papal visit.

In a joint letter, the priests told Madrid Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela that the sponsorship deals reinforced the impression the church was a privileged institution, Reuters reports.

“It’s been necessary to form a pact with the economic and political powers which reinforces the image of the church as a privileged institution, close to power, and the social scandal this implies, especially in the context of the economic crisis,” the priests said.

Organisers have mounted a nationwide advertising campaign, backed by well-known multinationals and Spain’s top companies.

Corporate logos of the companies, including Coca Cola , Telefonica , Santander and Iberia , fill the sponsorship page of the official visit website

“To trust in the strength of power and money … is to give in to a temptation as old as the Church,” said the letter.

“No one can serve two masters. You cannot serve both God and money,” the letter said, citing the passage from the Bible, Matthew 6:24.


Spanish priests criticise sponsorship for papal visit (Reuters)