Catholics & Comic Relief – No Go!

Catholics & Comic Relief – No Go!


This Friday is Red Nose Day, the biannual fundraising extravaganza for Comic Relief. There has been controversy about the event this year, with MP  David Lammy saying that Stacey Dooley was promoting a “white saviour” mentality with her Instagram photo of her holding a child in Uganda. There are certainly questions to be asked about the portrayal of Africa in fundraising efforts, but for pro-lifers, another question often comes up – does Comic Relief support abortion?  Click here to read more…


It should be obvious to any Catholic reading the LifeNews report that no Catholic could possibly, in good conscience support, in any way, the Comic Relief/Red Nose Day enterprise. 

Unfortunately, dressed up as fun and frolics,  it is attractive to young people keen to feel they are doing something worthwhile by raising funds for “charity” while, at the same time, enjoying themselves.  It is commonplace for Catholic schools to support Red Nose Day.

Is there an alternative?  Well, one Parish Priest in Glasgow turned Hallowe’en away from ghosts and ghouls, into a Saints & Angels event where children were invited to attend a parish party dressed as their favourite saint or as an angel, so it should not be beyond the bounds of the Bishops’ imagination to come up with a Catholic anti-dote to this annual “Comic Relief/Red Nose Day” fundraiser where money is going to various charities to which no Catholic should donate, not least the notorious Planned Parenthood abortion provider. 

Any ideas? 

Comments (23)

  • westminsterfly

    While we’re on the subject of dodgy charities, don’t buy National Lottery tickets of any description any more (if you were already doing so). It was recently announced that National Lottery are funding the ‘Mermaids’ organisation for ‘transgender children’ to the tune of £500,000 over 5 years. No Catholic can in good conscience fund this horrific experimentation on children.
    Likewise Comic Relief. I don’t know if they fund Mermaids as well, but they do fund other anti-Catholic, anti-life projects. There are fewer and fewer charities that Catholics can give to in good conscience, but we should always thoroughly research any charity before putting our hands in our pockets.

    March 14, 2019 at 1:11 pm
    • Margaret Mary

      Westminster Fly,

      Thanks for that shocking information – I won’t be buying any more lottery tickets, not that I have been doing so regularly.

      March 14, 2019 at 4:10 pm
      • westminsterfly

        SPUC has got a helpful list of charities which show anti-Catholic, anti-life policies: Comic Relief is among them:-

        March 14, 2019 at 4:24 pm
      • Fidelis

        Goodness me, the homosexual group, Terrence Higgins Trust jumped out at me from that list although every single “charity” on that list is totally out of bounds for Catholics to donate to.

        That’s sealed the deal for me – I will try to let as many people as possible know the truth about Comic Relief and Red Nose Day. Good for SPUC, providing that list.

        March 14, 2019 at 7:00 pm
      • Laura

        Westminster Fly,

        Kudos to SPUC for producing that very helpful list of charities to avoid. I will make good use of it.

        March 14, 2019 at 9:58 pm
  • Pat McKay

    Here’s an idea – ‘Red Rosaries for Life’

    If children were provided with free red rosaries (inexpensive plastic ones), they could then ask sponsors for e.g. £1:00 for every decade they would say to help save the life of an unborn child, with the proceeds to a sound pro-life organisation, such as the Good Counsel Network.

    Not sure if the bishops would support this, perhaps they’d see it as ‘not pastoral enough’.

    March 14, 2019 at 2:40 pm
    • Margaret Mary

      Pat McKay,

      I’m not sure it’s right to charge for saying a prayer. If it was £1 to buy the red plastic rosary that would be great. I am sure the Fatima Center would supply free leaflets explaining the rosary. That would work in Catholic schools, I hope.

      March 14, 2019 at 4:12 pm
    • Fidelis

      Pat McKay,

      I’d say Margaret Mary is right to doubt charging for a prayer – I think that is a definite no-no. Selling the red rosaries cheaply in a Catholic school is a great idea, though. Go for it!

      March 14, 2019 at 7:02 pm
  • westminsterfly

    Apart from the immoral causes that Comic Relief supports, I hate this idea which seems to be ingrained right across the board now, that giving to charity has to be connected with having fun. Why can’t people just give quietly and without all the razzmatazz?

    March 14, 2019 at 4:32 pm
    • Fidelis

      Westminster Fly,

      I completely agree – everything in school has to be “fun” these days, even lessons. I do wonder what that is really teaching children. When they go out to work, it won’t be fun, and what will they do then?

      March 14, 2019 at 6:57 pm
    • editor


      I understand completely what you say about everything having to be fun these days – and if we were talking only about adults, I’d say game, set and match to you 😀

      However, faced with pupils who are so used to everything being tailored to suit their wishes which tend to become their (alleged) needs, in order to motivate them to learn, collect for charity, whatever, teachers sometimes have to fight fire with fire.

      I think I can safely say that the teacher engaged in a “fun” lesson will be scored much higher by Ofsted than the teacher using tried and tested methods of learning; of course, the secret is to fool the lot of them by dressing up the tried and tested methods as a game – e.g. pupils to learn the Ten Commandments by heart and then quiz each other in pairs/groups, before reciting them to demonstrate to teacher that they’ve succeeded. Discussions on keeping said Commandments to follow, and not always such fun 😀

      In truth, though, I’m pretty sure teachers have always done that sort of thing, just didn’t realise they were hitting the ground running!

      So, I suppose the same principle might apply to raising money for charity. Pat McKay’s suggestion might be developed a little into getting pupils to MAKE little red rosaries, create a simple explanation sheet (thus teaching them about the rosary) and then, on Red Rosary Day, in collaboration with the Home Economics Department and/or pupils who have baked cakes etc, invite parents and friends and other locals into the school to examine the goods and make their purchases. All donations to Catholic Truth, of course. It would be fun and fruitful without the razzamatazz of Red Nose Day. And without looking ridiculous either…

      March 14, 2019 at 7:21 pm
      • Laura

        People do look stupid wearing these red noses. I wouldn’t wear one for all the money in the world, LOL!

        If only Catholic teachers were imaginative enough to teach the faith effectively in a way that would make sense to pupils while at the same time being enjoyable. I doubt it it’s the norm – or there wouldn’t be so much truancy! LOL!

        March 14, 2019 at 9:56 pm
      • Petrus


        I couldn’t agree more. Sometimes you have to “play the game”. The tried and tested methods should be a teacher’s bread and butter. However, a good teacher can take the most difficult subjects and make it stimulating. The real issue is when the fun overtakes the learning and the whole thing becomes superficial and contrived.

        I have to say, the Archdiocese of Glasgow are very clear that Catholic schools should not be supporting Red Nose Day. It’s an appalling charity.

        The big focus now in Catholic schools is “Mary’s Meals”. I’m always torn about this, as they do very good work, but their links to Medjugorje put me off.

        March 14, 2019 at 10:36 pm
      • editor


        That’s good news about the Archdiocese of Glasgow warning against supporting Red Nose Day – I’m very pleasantly surprised.

        I see the temptation about Mary’s Meals but even a drop of poison wouldn’t induce us to drink from a golden chalice, would it? Deep sigh… Not an original, I have to admit but I can’t remember where I read that!

        As far as I know, the Wayside Club, which used to be run by the Legion of Mary, is still looking after the homeless – giving them soup and shelter. It might be worth checking out, I just checked it out! Here’s the link to the Wayside Club website – seems it is still run by the Legion of Mary

        Not that the Legion is perfect, far from it, but it may be better to raise funds for the Wayside Club rather than risk supporting Medjugorje, albeit indirectly.

        I’m not sure the above is good advice, and part of me wants to say, do we really need pupils to actively raise funds for charity, bearing in mind that many of them will come from homes where their parent(s) are poor, perhaps even living on benefits, so there are other ways to teach about caring for the poor and needy. Gosh, I really am going OTT on this – I sometimes try too hard – in fact…

        March 14, 2019 at 11:57 pm
      • Pat McKay

        I may be wandering slightly off-topic here, but since pedagogy was mentioned above….

        To the pedagogues (and retired pedagogues) who are blog regulars here, I do hope you’re ‘paying attention’. But seriously, ‘tried and tested teaching methods’ were mentioned above, so I wondered what you guys (and gals) would have to say about this.

        I appreciate I’m talking about the 1960s, when there was a much different climate in the classroom compared to the present day. However, one of my teachers used to bang on and on about her ‘intelligentsia’ – a half dozen or so who were ‘A-students’ in that class of 10/11 year-olds. These were the full-of-confidence ‘whizz-kids’, who didn’t need to be thumped to make them work, who wrote all the best essays, knew all about current affairs, world politics, etc.

        The very intonation of her voice when she gushed about ‘my intelligentsia’ used to make the rest of us feel like we were ‘worthless also-rans’. Surely a good teacher ought to be coaxing and encouraging the less able in their class to realise their potential, rather than making them feel like inferior beings.

        Good or bad pedagogy?

        March 15, 2019 at 12:32 pm
      • Petrus

        It’s certainly not an approach I have ever used!

        March 15, 2019 at 3:17 pm
      • Petrus


        I’ve now had time to digest what you’ve written and I would definitely say that’s not only very bad pedagogy, but incredibly unprofessional. One of the hallmarks of a good teacher is to support all pupils in their class, differentiating work to allow all pupils to progress. This is sometimes challenging, but it’s what we are paid to do.

        I also believe a good teacher is incredibly fair and is very careful not to give the impression that he or she has favourites. This can be challenging because there are some pupils will naturally find more likeable than others, but it is most unprofessional to let that be known in such a blatant way.

        March 15, 2019 at 6:00 pm
      • Petrus


        Yes, I agree with you completely. I could never support Mary’s Meals, no matter how much good they do.

        I also agree that there’s too much emphasis placed on fundraising. We should be encouraging children to give to the poor quietly, not making a big song and dance about it. You also make a good point about some pupils coming from a poor background and living in poverty themselves. I remember my cousins going home and telling their mother they had to take money into school to give to poor people. Their mother answered, “We are the poor people”.

        What I cannot stand is the modern phenomena in secondary schools where pupils raise thousands of pounds to go and “build a school in Africa”. In reality, they are going for a holiday and laying a couple of bricks. We often have ex-pupils coming and asking for donations to their “Africa fund”. Why on earth should I donate money so pupils can go on holiday? I tell you who actually needs that money – Africans! If we donated all that money to the poor, instead of flying pupils to Africa, that would make a real difference!

        March 15, 2019 at 6:09 pm
      • editor


        I totally agree. I also know of teachers who object to the constant pull on their purses to support pupil enterprises, with knocks on the door for one “charity” after another. I’ve heard more than one point out that we come into school to EARN money, not give it away! In fact, many teachers, more often than not, have to dip into their own finances to purchase materials for school use, not to mention going the extra mile to provide small rewards/incentives to motivate pupils to work, so I fully agree with you on this, and I remember thinking the same (about holidays) when we ran the thread about Holyrood Secondary – you may remember that – where pupils were taken over the Malawi on a fairly regular basis; nice school trip if you can get it, to play on the old saying about work.

        It’s perfectly possible to learn about the importance being generous to others, especially those in need, without fundraising – I never once heard of or participated in any fundraising exercise but I still grew up knowing that, as a Catholic, I had a duty to help those less fortunate than myself.

        And when that lottery win comes in, I plan to do just that (only kidding, WF, I’ve received – and understood – your message about the Lottery!)

        March 15, 2019 at 8:39 pm
      • Margaret USA

        Dear Madame Editor,

        Not to get off topic, but I posted a comment on the Trump/Fatima thread when it was still open and it never showed up! 😢

        I realize that I’ve been away for a while but it should have posted.


        Margaret 🇺🇸

        March 17, 2019 at 1:05 pm
      • editor

        Margaret USA,

        I’ve searched the folders where moderated and blacklisted posts go (it’s been while since I’ve visited the latter, so I enjoyed that – hilarious comments from daft trolls. Why do they bother?)

        Anyway, you’re nowhere to be found in any of those folders, – I checked all the folders where “disappearing” posts are likely to land. AND I took a look at the Trump thread in case you HAD been published and hadn’t realised it because occasionally a post goes up but doesn’t show on the sidebar. I’ve told bloggers that, when that happens, just type “test” in the next comment box and when that is submitted the original comment will also show on the sidebar. Later, I will delete the test.

        So, I’m really sorry, but I can’t find your post for the Trump thread. It’s still open so if you have it copied, you can post it now.

        Sincere apologies – the Wonders of WordPress are more unfathomable than any mystery of Faith!

        We’ve missed you, by the way, so don’t stay away so long!

        March 17, 2019 at 4:01 pm
      • Margaret USA

        Dear Madame Editor,

        I tried it again, and this time it worked! Thank you!

        I will try to visit more often. It’s been hectic the past few months but things are starting to calm down now.

        Best wishes,

        Margaret 🇺🇸

        March 17, 2019 at 7:51 pm
  • Lily

    I’ve never supported Red Nose Day – I never watch the stuff on TV which is on constantly the whole time. Involving school children in it, is a way of making them accept all the evil around us, such as abortion, transgender ideology etc, without actually thinking through the issues.

    March 15, 2019 at 11:02 am

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