There is a bit of an uproar in the UK … about rewritten Christmas Carols, and then singing them in a church. As from the Telegraph article:
The event, titled “Bethlehem Now: Nine Alternative Lessons and Carols”, was held last week St James’s, Piccadilly and organised by Open Bethlehem, a Palestinian group and Jews for Boycotting Israeli.
It saw Once in Royal David’s City sung as: “Once in Royal David’s City, Stood a big apartheid wall, People entering and leaving, Had to pass a checkpoint hall, Bethlehem was strangulated, And her children segregated.”
The Twelve Days of Christmas was refashioned as: “Twelve assassinations, Eleven homes demolished, Ten wells obstructed, Nine sniper towers, Eight gunships firing, Seven checkpoints blocking, Six tanks a-rolling, Five settlement rings, Four falling bombs, Three trench guns, Two trampled doves, And an uprooted olive tree.”
Then, over to the Mail Online for reactions:
Bruce Kent, a former Roman Catholic priest and prominent peace campaigner who will read one of the lessons, said: ‘I think it is perfectly reasonable for carols to be rewritten in this way. ‘I am fed up with sugary religion – the baby Jesus sitting in his stable and all that stuff.’
‘Many British people have a great affection for Christmas carols and will be offended that they’re being used in such an overtly political way.’
‘This is the blatant politicising of the Christian festival of Christmas, and that in itself is offensive to many Christians.’
My reaction? Well, given that JZ now sees himself as “Jesus Christ Superstar” (my words), I think these rewritten carols could find supporters in SA.