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Catholics Protest: Over 14,000 Complaints call Jerry Springer Show Blasphemous

Contact: Robert Ritchie, American TFP, 717-309-1990

HANOVER, Penn., June 25 /Christian Newswire/ -- Members of the American TFP and its America Needs Fatima campaign are leading a protest against performances of "Jerry Springer – The Opera in Concert" outside the New Stage Collective in Cincinnati, where the production is scheduled to begin, on June 26, from 6-8 p.m.

"If blasphemy is considered art and sacrilege is called entertainment, then society is heading for a cultural and moral meltdown," said America Needs Fatima executive director Robert Ritchie.

According to Cincinnati City Beat, the TFP peaceful protest "began inundating the theater with letters, telephone calls and postcards from around the nation -- more than 14,000 so far. On some days, New Stage received about 1,000 pieces of mail." Alan Patrick Kenny, artistic director of the production, which many call blasphemous, said: "I certainly didn't expect the Postal Service to show up with a crate of mail every day."

The group's web site explains why Catholics are offended by the show: The crucifixion is mocked. The Eucharist is trashed. The Mass is ridiculed. Jesus is introduced as "the hypocrite son of the fascist tyrant on high." He wears a diaper, is fat and effeminate and later admits: "Actually, I am a bit gay." And the Annunciation is described as a rape.

"The 'opera' defies description in detail because it contains so much profanity and blasphemous content," Ritchie said. "The TFP protests such an indecent portrayal and finds objectionable the fact that God and Christ are made to say the most filthy and absurd things. The profanity-laced production considers nothing sacred."

In London, the show's debut was the subject of a libel suit for defaming Christians. When it aired on the BBC, it drew more than 60,000 complaints.

The American TFP held a protest prayer vigil, attended by hundreds of concerned Catholics, when the offensive production first staged at Carnegie Hall in New York last January.