An archbishop in Singapore has voced his concerns about an upcoming Madonna concert there, warning his flock not to support those who “denigrate and insult religions”.
Archbishop William Goh said he had met with government officials to express the church”s concerns about Sunday”s concert, which is part of the US star”s Rebel Heart tour.
The concert will be the first by Madonna in largely conservative Singapore, as she was banned from performing in 1993 after police decided her performances were “objectionable to many on moral and religious grounds”.
In a statement posted on the diocese website, the archbishop said: “It is our moral obligation not to support those who denigrate and insult religions, including anti-Christian and immoral values promoted by the secular world.
“There is no neutrality in faith; one is either for or against. Being present (at these events) in itself is a counter witness.”
The statement said many Roman Catholics had been upset by the singer”s “disrespectful use of Catholic and Christian symbols”.
He added that Christians should “subscribe to authentic arts that lead us to God through the appreciation of beauty…and not support the “pseudo arts” that promote sensuality, rebellion, disrespect, pornography, contamination of the mind of the young, abusive freedom, individualism at the expense of the common good, vulgarity, lies and half-truths”.
Singapore”s Media Development Authority has restricted the concert – being held at the 55,000-seat National Stadium – to those aged over 18 because of the sexual references.
According to local media reports, Madonna will not perform a segment called Holy Water, which features scantily-clad “nuns” dancing on cross-shaped poles.