What’s in a name? It all depends: if your name is “Bill Gates” then it’s the confidence that nobody’s going to call the fraud squad when you feel the urge to pass million dollar checks. Or the name “Steve Jobs” means that when you die the world will call you a visionary for selling recordings to people who’ve already purchased them twice before. While, on the other hand, the undertaker rarely breaks out premium grade formaldehyde for people called “Jane Doe”. And if one's family name is “bin Laden” it’s probably best to abandon your lifelong dream of a career at West Point. Or on the Alabama monster truck circuit.
Indeed, My Beloved Sinners: some hack called Shakespeare may well have said “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet”, but when I told the peroxide blonde who does “special” waxing at Cindy’s E-Z Nailz ‘n’ Beauty in the mall that she is the fragrant personification of Rosa Rubignosa she slapped my face and screamed that a three month course of antibiotics had “done fixed that rash fo’ good an’ any folks sayin’ diffrunt are cruizin’ for a learnin’ from muh step-cousin which won trophies fo’ kickboxing.”
Hence I must now implore you to learn from a recent occurrence within my own Ministry Team. By way of catching up on what had been happening in the parish during my recent absence I was studying the Church office internet logs, when, much to my horror, I discovered Evangelical Eric (my miserable excuse for a Curate) had been googling everything there is to know about someone called “Billy Love”.
Naturally, given my decades of selfless research into the sin in people’s lives, I have the gift of spotting a homosexualist nom de porn faster than you can say “Hugh Jorgan or “Dick Hunter. Or even “non-stipendiary Church of England priest”.
Hence I immediately knew – with the unshakeable certainty unique to those whose qualifications are in dubious theology (as opposed to godless liberal faux-sciences like psychiatry, medicine, psychology, or anthropology) when speaking on matters pertaining to sexuality – that my own Curate had been partaking of material featuring people making decisions with regard to their manner of life which involved engorged poles of man-flesh. And incoherent grunting. Needless to say the situation called for urgent pastoral intervention, and the rest of the St. Onuphrius' team were eager to assist (with the exception, I'm sorry to say, of Consuella, who just muttered something in Spanish about us "surely having something better to do with our time").
We began by implementing the the reorientation program Brother Richthofen and his Friends from Seminary have thoughtfully developed after being inspired by this well-balanced young man. (Don’t worry if you can’t make it to the end of his sermon. Neither can Bishop Quinine, who says there is something about the boy’s accent which always compels him to take the parish hounds out for a walk. Although curiously enough he generally forgets to take the dogs with him when he leaves, and only ever seems to get as far as the sports field change rooms.) Yet the wicked Curate continued denying everything. Instead of meekly repenting while we gently beat him about the lower limbs with facsimile editions of the Geneva Bible, Eric persisted in maintaining his innocence.
In fact so pathetic were the boy’s shrieks as we (in love, of course) tightened his correctional thumbscrews that I even stopped and listened to what he was trying to say. And – would you believe – he kept insisting that this “Billy Love” is actually a Conservative Bishop in northeastern New York.
That’s right my Sinners; and have you ever heard of such a thing? Then, as if this wasn’t outlandish enough, he claimed this supposed Prelate is actually a faithful disciple of my own Ministry Principles: encouraging Episcopalians to embrace prosperity teaching; being rude (especially to those whom God has appointed to exercise authority over him); fraternizing with dubious friends - not to mention being really obsessed with homosexualists.
Of course we paid no heed to such a pathetic delusion, and while there’s absolutely no empirical evidence to show Eric’s reorientation therapy is proving successful, we all know that a little thing like that isn’t enough to stop our program soon developing into a world-wide and highly profitable venture. Especially since our anecdotal evidence shows it works perfectly, and once his new obsession with suicide settles down into a more manageable case of chronic self-loathing my Curate should be almost as functional as any other emotionally-crippled Conservative. Although it'll probably never be a good idea to allow him to watch figure-skating unsupervised. Which just goes to show how blessed he is that we haven’t been fooled by his fanciful tales of this erstwhile “Billy Love” actually being a Bishop – when it comes to Love one should always give more weight to preconceptions and cultural phobias than to the Gospels and the Holy Spirit.
Isn’t that right +Albany?
I’m Father Christian I teach the Bible.