Verdicts on Christmas campaign
Bernard Basset's invitation to CATHOLIC HERALD readers to give their opinions on the Christ mas Poster Campaign has had a
Hundreds of readers have written majority have declined to give a direct questions ; Was it worth while? for a good reason. to him—but the great answer to his principal
Shall it be repeated ? And
Hundreds of readers have written majority have declined to give a direct questions ; Was it worth while? for a good reason. Their letters imply that the first question was answered months ago when 60,000 Catho
lics in all parts of the country not only said Yes" to the
proposal to put tip the Christmas greetings posters but sent gifts of money to make it possible. Certainly it was worth while.
The second question—Shall the posters be put up again next Christmas ?—is indirectly but nonetheless definitely answered by suggestions as to how the picture itself could be improved and where the posters should be put up so that they shall catch the eye.
Moreover, quite a number of readers want posters for Easter and other religious seasons as well as for Christmas. Once a year, they imply, is not enough to stir the thoughts of men who never go into a church and cause them to raise their minds and hearts to God.
Further, such men need to be told or reminded that Jesus not only came to speak to them hut also to die for them.
Fr. Basset and his collaborators wanted, by means of the posters, to carry the meaning of Christmas to the English public arid to bridge the gap between a mere time-for-presentsChristmas and the Ceib — to stress that Christmas has no real meaning without Christ and the Mass.
Many readers indicate that the bridge was not completed by the picture or the wording. The words "A Merry Christmas." they seem to think, would not convey appreciably more than a commercial " Christmas" greeting to the near-unbeliever.
The general impression on this point is that the posters next Christmas should have a reminder that Christmas is Christ's Birthday.
A large number of readers suggest that the posters should say who is responsible for them. They do not think any purpose is served in " keeping it dark." To some is was like receiving an anonymous Christmas card.
Most of the remarks about the picture itself call for a simpler design and brighter colours.
Readers point out that if one stood in front of a poster and studied it, the effect was good and the picture told its story. But they remarked also that such a poster, if it is to do its work, must catch the inattentive eye of the passer-by and present its message in a flash.
It has, they say, to compete in colour and presentation with scores of commercial posters: it cannot expect special treatment. Another suggestion is that the posters should be reproduced in miniature, to be stuck on the back of envelopes.
A number of writers would prefer cribs to posters — cribs in church
porches. brilliantly lit up. These, they believe, would attract closer and longer attention.
Fr, Basset and his collaborators wish to send their grateful thanks to all who have written — priests and laity — and to assure them that all their suggestions are being eagerly studied.
A further spur to a renewal of the campaign has been the widespread interest of the London and provincial newspapers. Dozens of cuttings show that newspapers appreciated the kind Christian thought which prompted the campaign and the impression the posters gave of creating a warm family feeling among people who are otherwise strangers to each other.