A church in Holland has raised eyebrows by introducing a premium rate line to call an angel.
The church board of St. John’s Cathedral in the municipality of Den Bosch has opened a 0900 telephone number to listen to a tape.
The story begins a year ago when, as part of a major restoration of the cathedral, a statue of an angel wearing jeans and holding a mobile phone was added to the south side of the building. (“The phone has just one button – it dials directly to God,” quipped the artist, Ton Mooy.)
Shortly afterwards, as a joke, an unknown woman set up an 06 (mobile phone) number and a Twitter account in the name of ut Engelke (“the little angel”). The “service” – for which there is no charge – now gets some 30 calls a day, including those a number from regular users. A girl rings in every Friday to report on her week.
The church reacted by setting up its own 80-cents-a-minute line, the proceeds from which, it says, are going to fund the maintenance of the cathedral.