The ruling of the European Court of Human Rights on the advertisement with Jesus and Mary dangerously paves way for businesses to profit by insulting religious members of the society and desecrating their religion, says Archbishop Gintaras Grušas, the chairman of the Lithuanian Conference of Bishops.
Archbishop Gintaras Grušas
© DELFI / Orestas Gurevičius

"The ECHR ruling paves way for businesses to make a profit a the expense of dignity of other members of the society. The advertisement, which was the subject of the court ruling, has nothing to do with criticism of religion, difference of opinions or competition of ideas in a free democratic society. In the case, the court failed to notice desecration of the images of Jesus and Mary for commercial and profit purposes," Grušas said in a press release.

Earlier this week, the Strasbourg court found that Lithuania's authorities "gave absolute primacy to protecting the feelings of religious people, without adequately taking into account the applicant company's right to freedom of expression" in the assessment of advertisement campaign of clothing of designer Robert Kalinkin.

The advertisement campaign of clothes by designer Robert Kalinkin , which was run in the fall of 2012, featured a young long-haired man and a woman in a white dress. The advertisements contained the captions "Jesus, what trousers!", "Dear Mary, what a dress!", and "Jesus [and] Mary, what are you wearing!".

The then State Non-Food Products Inspectorate imposed a fine on the advertisers after receiving complaints and Lithuanian courts stated that the ads were contrary to public morals.

The court ruled that the advertisements of the Kalinkin line did not seem excessively offensive or blasphemous, they also do not fuel religious hatred.

According to the last population census in 2011, 77 percent of people in Lithuania identify themselves as Roman Catholics and another 4 percent are Orthodox.

BNS
It is prohibited to copy and republish the text of this publication without a written permission from UAB „BNS“.
Leave a comment
or for anonymous commenting click here
By posting, you agree to terms
Read comments Read comments

MO Museum invites viewers to discover themselves among animals and robots

Can you imagine how animals feel around us? Would like to sing in the language of flies? Have ever...

Special ceremony for the Humanist of the Year Award at the Embassy of Finland in Lithuania

On March 26, 2019, the Ambassador of Finland to Lithuania HE Christer Michelsson and Mrs Ebba...

Vilnius: welcome to a dynamic film set

When Helen Mirren walks into her home as Catherine the Great in the new HBO mini series named after...

Education experts from around the globe to meet at an international forum ‘World after University’ in April

On 4th of April, 2019 high-ranking politicians, professors, rectors and the best education experts...

Director Saulius Beržinis awarded with Rogatchi Foundation Humanist of the Year 2018 Award

The Rogatchi Foundation is pleased to inform that its Humanist of the Year 2018 Award will be handed...