Obviously word of my incredibly generous and pastoral response has travelled, because in response little Peter Jensen, Lord of Mordor and Archbishop of Sydney, issued a press release announcing that he would also be praying. This was in turn sent to me by no fewer than three Beloved Sinners, all of whom were amazed by the penultimate paragraph:
“The special relationship forged in conflict while facing common enemies means that our hearts go out to the citizens of Christchurch and that we have a special reason to pray for them.”Naturally I consider it entirely appropriate that in a time of grief such as this a Christian Leader should speak of “conflict” and “enemies”. What better an occasion is there to remember hatred and division than when people are mourning, and their lives devastated? Yet it can't be denied that I was also disappointed little Peter failed to be more explicit. Having never made any secret of his ambition to export the unique permutation of Gnostic Puritanism he so quaintly calls “authentic Anglicanism” (a boast his Forward in Faith allies-of-convenience must love hearing) to neighbouring dioceses, his sudden coyness in this regard is curious: who exactly are the “enemies” of which the GAFCON Committee’s favourite faux-primate speaks? Female Clergy? Homosexualists? Women daring to read the Bible aloud in the presence of men?
Aware that My Beloved Sinners deserve an explanation, the St. Onuphrius’ Ministry Team decided to call the contact at the bottom of the release: Russell Powell – the “Archbishop’s Senior Media Adviser”. Sadly upon his answering it became immediately clear that little Peter’s serfs are not used to their master’s press releases being taken seriously. Nor – if the very drowsy voice on the other end of the line was any indication – is the Senior Media Adviser’s workload such as to oblige him to get out of bed in the morning. In fact the poor man sounded so sleepy that I initially feared Bishop Quinine was mistaken in his insistence that the time in Australia was currently half past eight in the morning (a not unjustified suspicion given we heard him muttering “carry the nine and multiply by the square root of thirteen” whilst calculating), but subsequent checks ascertained we were indeed calling at a time less professional media advisers (i.e. those working for organizations where losing $160 million is deemed something for which those responsible must be held accountable) consider “mid-morning”. Although given the head honcho's track record I dare say Russell Powell isn't the only serf in Mordor to have lost faith in the old adage about “Early to bed and early to rise” rendering one “healthy, wealthy, and wise.”
Finally, once he’d regained some semblance of cognitive function, came a response which made the wait worthwhile. Lord Volder-Jensen wasn’t talking about his usual Anglican enemies, but about international ones. The people of Sydney and Christchurch, Sleeping Beauty continued, fought on the same side through both world wars, and the Arch-faux-primate was referring to these conflicts – something which “would have been immediately clear any Australian or New Zealander”.
Obviously I was overjoyed at hearing this, despite wondering how I’d break the news to the Beloved Sinners who’d sent the link that they’re clearly not really citizens of their respective countries, and their parents must have lied to them regarding their birth places. After all, in this time of sorrow little Peter Jensen had realized there’s something even more sacred than hating Apostate Liberals – killing foreigners. Our conversation continued:
“So Archbishop Jensen was referring to a time when the people of your two nations joined to kill Germans and Japanese?”Things somewhat tapered off from there - obviously the Senior Media Adviser wasn't used to engaging with a Doctrinal Warrior of my caliber. Yet as among those missing and presumed killed are twelve young Japanese students I can with absolute confidence declare that, given his amazing sensitivity and tact, we can all now expect little Peter Jensen's next project to be an evangelistic campaign in the streets of Tokyo. Featuring screenings of this.
“Yes.. er… I suppose you could put it that way.”
“And now the Archbishop is comforting the bereaved, homeless, and frightened by reminding everyone how much your countrymen enjoyed killing Germans and Japanese together. If only more Christian Leaders understood the importance of recalling bloodshed and war in times of suffering!”
“Er… Yes... Sort of...”
I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.