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>> News > United Kingdom
Church of England to Open McDonald’s Restaurants to Attract Back Worshippers - September 26th 2004

The Church of England is to trial a new scheme to attract back former worshippers by opening McDonald’s bars in their churches and cathedrals. The move comes following a decline in churchgoers, particularly in the 50+ age bracket.

Archbishop Keith Wilson believes the move will be very effective in bringing back those members, and attracting new younger members.

“Having analysed the idea, we believe that this scheme will bring back the senior church members by making the church more attractive to young children. Many grandparents only get to see their child at weekends and are forced to choose between their family and the church.

“By offering Big Macs during church services children will be begging their grandparents to take them. In fact, we’ve just lined up a Happy Meal movie deal with Mel Gibson’s Passion of the Christ – if children collect all 4 toys on promotion they will have Jesus Christ, the cross, and nails and the mallet to hammer them in with. When fully assembled, you can fill Christ’s body up with tomato ketchup and the palms of his hands act as a novelty dispenser. How’s that for getting kids interested in religion again?”

Church of England Church and McDonalds
St. Margaret's Church in King's Lynn is one of the first churches to be running the new McDonalds scheme.

The idea has not struck well with all churchgoers, believing that the scheme will detract from the church service. Lifelong Christian and weekly churchgoer Olivia Hankman was quick to express her opinions:

“What happens if it’s some kid’s birthday? How will I be able to concentrate on the Lord’s prayer with dropout adolescents singing Happy Birthday and pulling party poppers in the next aisle? And the idea of replacing traditional wooden pews with the McDonald’s tables and chairs – they’ve even added promotional adverts on every other page of the bibles. God now created the heaven, the earth and the McChicken Sandwich for £2.99.”

If successful in attracting children and middle-aged worshippers, the Church already has plans to attract back one of its least represented demographics: 18-36yearold males.

“Initially we planned to put in LAN networks and have Doom 3 Deathmatches,” Archbishop Wilson explained, “But then we found out the game was all about Hell being unleashed and had lots of Satanic imagery which is not ideal material to have in a church.”

As a result, the church was forced to switch its plans from having 64 terminal LAN parties between services and use their back up option for attracting young males:

“If the McDonalds venture is successful in 2006 we will unveil the first church based strip joint. We’ll have fast food, religion and naked women – it will truly be the perfect family venue.”

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