It wouldn't happen to the Koran: Pope attacks Glasgow art gallery's invitation to vandalise a Bible

The Pope has condemned a ’ disgusting’ taxpayer-funded exhibition in which visitors are urged to deface the Bible.

Visitors were offered pens by gallery bosses so they could scrawl comments on the text - leading to a host of puerile and obscene remarks. Pope Benedict XVI believes the stunt would not have been contemplated with a copy of the Koran. His anger over the show, organised by council-funded arts body Culture and Sport Glasgow, was expressed by a senior Vatican priest.

The adviser to the Pope said: ‘It is disgusting and offensive. They would not think of doing it to the Koran.’

Public complaints about the exhibit at the prestigious Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow have forced organisers to put the vandalised Bible on show in a locked case, while still allowing visitors to write comments on blank sheets of paper.

The Made In God’s Image exhibit is the work of Glasgow artist Anthony Schrag.
He wanted gays and transsexuals who felt left out of religion to ‘write their way back in’ to the holy text. Mr Schrag worked with members of the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) in Edinburgh on the project. But MCC minister Jane Clarke said: 'I had hoped people would show respect for the Bible.

I am saddened some have chosen to write offensive messages.’

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Pray for them :slight_smile:

How sad. I bet those that are willing to defend this horrible act in one breath, would in the next breath offer criticism against the Church for burning banned books. These hypocrites are only for free speech and tolerance when it’s their ox being gored.

It really is not a great surprise that such a thing can (and does) happen. It has actually been going on since the Reformation, and is continued on a more viscous level that is more disrespectful and open than it has ever been in history. It is the true manifestation of liberalism and modernism in one of it’s darker forms whose author is the enemy of mankind.

I always have always respected and honored freedom of speech, but there are lines that should be drawn in certain instances. The abuse of the freedom of speech is the precursor of soon losing it in certain political situations This is not something that everyone who says that they are “exercising” there right to free speech always remembers. Ask those who are unable to do so, and you will most likely be told this is a hard truth. Art should never be an excuse for blatent disrespect, but sadly, it is a truth that is a reality of the art world.

As those who see, we must lead the blind when we can. This requires patience and prayer to be effective. God will judge such actions and divine justice cannot come swiftly enough. I see such actions as the continued crucifixion of Our Lord, and this He said would always be the case.

“I had hoped people would show respect for the Bible” - how utterly naive of Jane Clarke. For goodness’ sake, the museum authorities were giving out pens and then free reign to write what they wished on the Bible. Surely such an opportunity would naturally be seized more vigorously by those whose lifestyles and moral codes do not agree with the teachings of Sacred Scripture. Most people who do actually acknowledge the Bible to be a sacred text would not go to a museum to deface a copy of it in any way.

Unfortunately, the Pope or his spokesman is absolutely right - this would not happen if the exhibition included a copy of the Koran. The Muslim community, I have no doubt would be protesting vehemently against such a thing. Indeed, I’m sure Christians of goodwill would support such protests because they would acknowledge the importance of the Koran as a sacred text to the Muslim community. As one commentator on the newspaper website simply said: “Every church leader should protest”.

I just saw this on the gallery’s website:

Changes to the Made in God’s Image exhibition at GoMA

Publish Date: Tuesday 28 July 2009

Jane Clarke, the minister at the Metropolitan Community Church and artist involved in the bible exhibit, has requested changes to the exhibit. The bible remains on display, but within an enclosed case.

On another plinth next to it are loose leaf sheets and pens for visitors to write their thoughts and feelings in relation to the bible. Those loose sheets will be inserted within the pages of the bible by curatorial staff each day.

Ms Clarke said, ‘Writing our names in the margins of a Bible was to show how we have been marginalised by many Christian churches, and also our desire to be included in God’s love.

‘As a young Christian I was encouraged by my church to write my own insights in the margins of the Bible I used for my daily devotions – this was an extension of that idea. I still have that Bible, although it’s rather tatty now.’

She added, ‘It was never my intention to offend anyone – believers and non-believers alike. I had hoped that people would show respect for the Bible, for Christianity and indeed for the Gallery of Modern Art. I am saddened that some people have chosen to write offensive messages.’

Awseome of Benedict to speak up for us and his comments about the Koran double standard are spot!


i don’t think the art gallery would be brave enough to put out the Koran and ask people to write on it for fear of a Jihad against the people who own the gallery, work there or visit there.

and they wouldn’t dream of putting the Torah on display and ask people to write on it either because that would be anti-semitic.

but, let’s put the Christian Holy Bible on display and see what happens.

another way to defame Christianity and the Holy Bible. it is very sad to see that people would write negative phrases and words on the Holy Bible, but that only shows you the state of our world today.

i am glad that the Pope is speaking up.

There are a number of (rarely invoked but still on the books) laws in the UK that could be cited as a legal means to block actions like this if other people wish to copy it.

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