Everyone who moves in Italy has a wrinkled and worn saint card taped to their dash--or in their wallet or purse. So why not download your favorite saint (or saint to be in John Paul II) to carry around on your mobile phone. On Tuesday it became a reality. A sort of modern download that advertises the best of Catholicism (how I as an adguy think of it). Or...just a better, more permanent way to carry your Saint Christopher santini. Seems like a smart idea to me. And would look great on a new iphone.
But not everyone agrees. "This is in really bad taste," Bishop Lucio Soravito De Franceschi, a member of the Italian bishops conference committee for doctrinal matters, told the Turin newspaper La Stampa. "It is a distortion of sacred things...selling 'santini' for cell phones is horrifying," he said.
Not so says the originator of the idea. "We found a need and filled it," Barbara Labate, who developed the concept with her business partner in a cellphone services company based in Milan. "We are merely catching up with the times. I think this will appeal to young people as well as grandmothers," Fifteen saints launched the service. More are planned. About $4.50 a text message initiated download.
Rockstars can only be next. How about Saint Bono? Or Mr. Sympathy for the Devil incarnate, Mick Jagger?