FRENCH BISHOPS SUE VOLKSWAGEN, AD AGENCY OVER PARODY BILLBOARD

     PARIS (CWN) - France's bishops' conference said on Wednesday it would file suit against Volkswagen and an advertising agency over billboards selling the new Golf depicting the Last Supper.

      "An ad like the one sending up Christ's Last Supper might seem like an inoffensive jibe at the Christian faith, but it reduces it to the level of an advertising gimmick and degrades it," the French Bishops Conference said in a letter to Volkswagen France. The conference said it was taking legal action "to obtain reparations for the damage suffered by Christians."

      The bishops' conference is seeking 3.3 million francs in damages, the newspaper Le Monde reported. It said Volkswagen was ready to pull the ads but the conference was going ahead with their lawsuit. Sources at the DDB-Needham ad agency confirmed that the association Croyances et Libertes, representing the French Bishops' Conference, had taken legal action.

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February 6-8, 1998 volume 9, no. 27          DAILY CATHOLIC

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