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Catholic Cleric says Disney Corrupts Children

By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS Staff Writer   A leading Catholic cleric in England is accusing Disney of corrupting children and encouraging greed. Fr. Christopher Jamison is the Abbot of Worth, a Benedictine Monastery outside London,  who starred in the hit BBC series The Monastery. In a recent interview with the London Telegraph, Fr. Jamison accused Disney of pretending to provide stories with a moral message while actually helping to create a more materialistic culture. He cites films such as Sleeping Beauty and 101 Dalmatians that feature moral battles, but get into children’s imaginations and make them greedy for the merchandise that goes with them. “The message behind every movie and book, behind every theme park and T-shirt is that our children’s world needs Disney,” he said. “So they absolutely must go to see the next Disney movie, which we”ll also want to give them on DVD as a birthday present.” Fr. Jamison, who some consider to be a contender to succeed Cardinal Cormac Murphy O’Connor as the next Archbishop of Westminster, says thousands of families around the world buy into Disney’s deeper message that children must live the full Disney experience.   “This is the new pilgrimage that children desire, a rite of passage into the meaning of life according to Disney,” he said. “Where once morality and meaning were available as part of our free cultural inheritance, now corporations sell them to us as products.” Disney markets itself as being about more than just material things but in essence, they are actually creating an addiction to consumption. He considers Disney to be a “classic example” of how consumerism is being sold as an alternative to finding happiness in traditional morality.  “This is basically the commercial exploitation of spirituality,” he said, adding that as a result Disney and other corporations “inhabit our imagination.” And once planted there, “they can make us endlessly greedy,” he said. “And that is exactly what they are doing.” © All Rights Reserved, Living His Life Abundantly/Women of Grace.