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Friday, December 14, 2007

England's Christmas Stamp Controversy

In November, England released 2 sets of first and second class Christmas stamps to the public. One set consists of two images of the Madonna and Child and the other set has six different angels. The problem is, not many people know that the traditional Christian stamps, the Madonna and Child, even exist.

As soon as the stamps went into circulation, complaints began to arise that the post offices were not advertising or promoting the new Christian stamp. Some places in England report that they had to ask for the Madonna and Child stamp by name, even as the angels were being offered up constantly to customers. Some customers believe that not promoting the Christian stamps were part of a plot to end the Christian Christmas stamp by erroneously proving that there is simply no public demand for them. There was no real explanation as to why there were tens of millions of Madonna and Child stamps printed while there were hundreds of millions of the secular-themed stamps.

The Post Office is trying to end the confusion and stop accusations that are being made as to why they have not put much effort into promoting their Christian stamps this year. In the past, the Royal Mail alternated Christian stamps and secular themed Christmas stamps every other year. This year, the stamp was supposed to be Christian based. It was announced this week that it was always the plan to run both stamps at Christmas this year. According to the Royal Mail, 2007 has served as the trial run for issuing both types of stamps from this year forward. Their spokesman denied that they are now bowing to public complaints and pressure by saying that "this was always the plan for these stamps".

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