Religion & Beliefs

Have Yourself a Merry Little Shoplifted Christmas

As the economy struggles to recover, many families have scaled back their holiday gift-giving this year. But instead of preaching about anti-commercialization or how the real meaning of the holidays is religion/spending time with family/love, one priest took a decidedly … Read More

By / December 21, 2009

As the economy struggles to recover, many families have scaled back their holiday gift-giving this year. But instead of preaching about anti-commercialization or how the real meaning of the holidays is religion/spending time with family/love, one priest took a decidedly different approach to his Christmas sermon. Father Tim Jones of St Lawrence Church in York, England, told congregants that it was acceptable to shoplift from big chain stores. That’s right, kids – God (well, this guy who supposedly speaks on God’s behalf) says it’s OK to take things that don’t belong to you. I’ll meet you at the Wal-Mart as soon as this week’s service is over.

Via the Daily Mail:

The married father-of-two insisted his unusual advice did not break the Bible commandment ‘Thou shalt not steal’ – because God’s love for the poor outweighs his love for the rich.

Delivering his festive lesson, Father Jones told the congregation: ‘My advice, as a Christian priest, is to shoplift.  I do not offer such advice because I think that stealing is a good thing, or  because I think it is harmless, for it is neither.

‘I would ask that they do not steal from small family businesses, but from large national businesses, knowing that the costs are ultimately passed on to the rest of us in the form of higher prices.

So, if someone does that and gets arrested, is Jones the one who should go to prison? And does this mean that when you’re shoplifting you should also feel free to swipe a nice present for your friendly neighborhood priest while you’re at it?