A Sidamo Celebration and Fabulous Worship


Photo by John Quilty

On Sunday March 4th the “Sidamo Prayer Campaign” celebrates the defeat of what they call the Starbucks Ethiopian trademark theft, with a new gospel song and hot sermon at the Astor Place Starbucks at 4 PM. The group will dance and sing two blocks over to St. Mark’s in the Bowery at 10th Street and 2nd Avenue where, at 5 PM, the real holy jiggly begins…

The campaigners hold a Celebration and issue a Warning, saying “Starbucks Backs Down On Pirating Ethiopian Trademarks, Now Will It Trade Fair?”

Through exorcisms and online outreach the Stop Shopping Church worked with OxfamAmerica and East African activists to pressure Starbucks to acknowledge the trademark rights of Ethiopian coffee farmers.

The activists say owning the trademarks for “Sidamo” and “Harar” coffees would get the farmers a higher sale price in the international market for these elite beans. Ethiopian coffee families have experienced disease and hunger – they are among the poorest people in the world. Starbucks’ two year opposition to the Ethiopian trademarks was recently dropped, but now refuses to pay more for the prized coffee.

Meanwhile, the Stop Shopping Church says that neighborhoods don’t need more of the mono-cultural latte. In the East Village, they say – No Starbucks East of 2nd Avenue! Hallelujah! Change-A-Lujah!

The Reverend, choir and band say they are thrilled to perform at St. Mark’s Church as a rousing send-off to their cinematic adventure at the South By Southwest festival in Austin. 42 troupe members will fly to Texas for the premiere of the Morgan Spurlock-produced What Would Jesus Buy? [see Christianity Today Library]

The film follows the Church as it makes its way in two buses across the country, from Buy Nothing Day in New York City to Christmas Day in Disneyland, trying to “save Christmas from the Shopocalypse.” The film features Cash Register Exorcisms at Starbucks stores in Europe and the United States.

Reverend Billy, the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir and Not Buying It Band

Sunday, March 4

4:00pm action at Astor Place Starbucks,

5:00pm Fabulous Worship begins at St. Mark’s, located at 2nd Avenue and 10th Street in the East Village.

$10 for the show – no one turned away for lack of funds

Website: www.reverendbilly.org

Brand Autopsy blog discussed the story and shows the Starbucks video response.

Alan Gray is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of NewsBlaze Daily News and other online newspapers. He prefers to edit, rather than write, but sometimes an issue rears it’s head and makes him start pounding the keyboard. Alan has a fascination with making video and video editing, so watch out if he points his Canon 7d in your direction.