Letter: Press button 1 for salvation

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Sir: Faced with overcapacity, disappearing customers and no possibility of diversifying, the Church of England might have to take a lead from other big businesses caught in the same trap - close branches, downsize to a core, sell peripherals and real estate ("Runcie and the long melancholy roar", 10 February).

This would finance redundancies in the field and a new small organisation at Lambeth with a catchy title , staffed by a few bishops. Some would handle advertising of the Christian message by all usual means, including telephone and maildrop. The rest would run a Freefone helpline.

Supplicants might be answered - "Hello, thank you for calling ABC. If you seek salvation, press 1. To discuss remission of your sins, press 2. For Bible queries, press 3. We cannot help with dreams of avarice but if you press the star key and then 666 you will be connected to Mammon, a division of your local water company."

In all seriousness, if the above process works for the business world, why not for religion?

GRAHAM HOLDEN

Budleigh Salterton, Devon

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