Oh, horrors! Mary and Jesus have rainbow halos!

Take a look at this image.

It may not be great art but seems pretty innocuous, no?

But it appears that the identical image but with a golden halo is a religious icon known as the Black Madonna of Czestochowa and the government of Poland thinks that depicting Virgin Mary and the infant Jesus with rainbow halos is a prosecutable offense because it “offends religious sentiment”.

A woman has been arrested on suspicion of offending religious sentiment, after posters bearing an image of the Virgin Mary with her halo painted in the colours of the rainbow flag appeared in the city of Plock in central Poland.

The Polish interior minister, Joachim Brudzinski, announced on Twitter on Monday that a person had been arrested for “carrying out a profanation of the Virgin Mary of Czestochowa”.

Offending religious feeling is a crime under the Polish penal code. If convicted, the woman could face a prison sentence of up to two years.

Brudzinski, who described the posters as “cultural barbarism” when they appeared overnight in April, said: “Telling stories about freedom and ‘tolerance’ doesn’t give anyone the right to offend the feelings of believers.”

Of course, pretty much anything will offend some religious believers. What this is all about is straight up homophobia, with causing religious offense merely the excuse for cracking down on any sign of support for the LGBTQI community.

To my mind the rainbow halos are actually an improvement, brightening up an otherwise drab and depressing image.


  1. Bruce says

    The rainbow connects Mary and Jesus to the story of Noah.
    But Noah was a fictional character adopted indirectly from the then-ancient Epic of Gilgamesh and other Iraqi fables.
    Fortunately, Mary and Jesus were fictional characters also, so no harm done.

  2. cartomancer says

    Religious icons themselves, of just this sort, are deeply offensive to many religious people. Protestants, for example. One might recall there was a touch of tension in the Early Modern period in central Europe over just this disagreement.

    The Poles should know better on this issue -- they were the first nation in Europe to pass wide-ranging edicts of religious tolerance, in the Warsaw Confederation of 1573. This kept them largely out of the horrific Thirty Years War that engulfed the rest of central Europe, and made the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth a place of sanctuary for religious nonconformists from across Europe for the next centuries.

  3. sonofrojblake says

    causing religious offense merely the excuse for cracking down on any sign of support for the LGBTQI community.

    Not wishing to defend the ridiculous idea of a blasphemy law, but…

    No. This is not logical at all.

    This is not just “any sign of support”. This is a sign of support which, if you’re honest, you know is deliberately designed to offend religious people. Now, I’m all in favour of offending religious people, BUT I’m not in favour of then disingenuously feigning shock that they’re offended, or clutching my pearls and saying “but I can’t say ANYTHING without offending those nasty Christian oppressors!!!”.

    The fact is that it is perfectly possible to show support for the LGBTQI[is that enough letters? I struggle to keep up] community without offending sky-pixie botherers. And by all means, offend them. Just don’t pretend to anyone that you’re surprised when they react. It makes the rational side of the argument look shifty.

  4. OverlappingMagisteria says

    …you know is deliberately designed to offend religious people.

    I don’t know the motivations of whoever created the image, but there are many Christians who support LGBTQI rights and believe that God does too. So Jesus and Mary with rainbow halos could very well be in support of that idea. That is not designed to specifically offend religious people but to put forth their own religious ideas.

  5. bmiller says

    OM: It is amazing what proof text reading and cherry picking can allow, even (especially?) for “liberals” eager to find the Canaanite Tribal War God Religion and Semi-Related Cult a “woke” faith.

  6. Mano Singham says

    sonofrojblake @#3

    We cannot conclude that the rainbow halos were deliberately designed to offend people. My first reaction to the depiction was that it was done as a sign of inclusivity to the LGBTQI community. The rainbow symbol is frequently used for that purpose. Until you asserted it, it never crossed my mind that it was designed to deliberately provoke.

  7. file thirteen says


    My first reaction to the depiction was that it was done as a sign of inclusivity to the LGBTQI community.

    Same here.

  8. lanir says

    Revelations was wrong. The end of christianity will not happen with wailing and beasts with hundreds of heads. It will apparently have a beast with a thousand toes to step on and be conducted to the sound of pretentious claims that their feelings were hurt.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *