Thursday, December 25, 2008

"God bless Us, Every One!" (and a very Merry Christmas to you all)

My Dearly Beloved Wicked Godless Sinners:
Goodness me I've been through a spot of bother for my righteousness' sake! As you've all been well aware and crying in your ignorance, I've been lately unable to communicate due to the small inconvenience of having been imprisoned and refused bail, but fortunately this glorious Christmas Day now finds me released from my chains and incarcerated no longer.

As is so often the case with such things, it was all the result of a small misunderstanding on the part of apostate liberals. There I was, at our traditional end-of-year children's service distributing gifts of cigarettes, knives, and (for the older ones) ammunition, when a number of servants of the Evil One (also known as "Child Protection Officers") intervened, dragging me away to face their accusations and what the legal system quaintly calls "charges".

Yes, such are the depths to which our reprobate society has plummeted that such playthings are now deemed off-limits to little ones, and distributing the merry baubles which my dear late father referred to as "Darwin's Little Helpers" carries a sentence of twenty years to life. Further, ever since Michael Jackson gave the expression "Jesus Juice" a bad name teaching kiddies to do something as wholesome as how to construct and operate their own still is now a serious offence, and permitting children under ten to enjoy their first sips of absinthe or tequila within the caring context of the Sunday Children's fellowship can leave one sharing a cell with someone named "Bubba" who thinks dropping the soap while the warden hoses us is just as romantic as soft music and a candlelight dinner.

To be fair, Evangelical Eric did try to tell me times had changed, and that we were inviting trouble, but his alternative that we give the kiddies Bibles instead was so manifestly foolish that I must confess he was dismissed out of hand. After all, have any of you seen what's in that thing? Sure parts such as Judges and Leviticus are fine, and Bishop Quinine has experienced some marvellous hallucinations while reading the Revelation to St. John, but how can any of them grow up talking about the thing all the time if they've begun by reading it while just children? And all that stuff about loving one's neighbour - without a single proviso about your neighbour's sexuality, religion or gender? It's all very well for Jesus to generalise, but clearly He didn't find himself living next door to a couple of lesbian Wiccans. Nor did they have key-hole cameras back in those day to capture what such people get up to when they think nobody's watching - do you realise that these alternatives dare to cook and do housework just the same as everyone else unable to afford a ministry team? They don't even have the temerity to live in a non-stop orgy as GAFCON clergy teach they do!! Although I must confess to having kept my fellow inmates entertained these past few weeks by recounting a few fictitious observations - a gift which enabled me to quickly seize control of the prison's entire contraband cigarette economy.

However, just as St. Peter was freed from prison and all good times must come to an end, so too have I now been released, with the charges against me dropped and all paperwork conveniently lost - although sadly I was unable to attain a truly Biblical outcome and achieve my wardens' execution. Nor, unlike St.Peter, can I really claim to have followed an angel to the exit, although in a marvellous example of promotional initiative Consuella and the girls did meet me in their performance costumes, which will do wonders for the takings at our Friday night pole-dancing service: you'd better believe the fellows watching us through the bars will be dreaming about St. Onuphrius every night until they get parole. What's more Brother Richthofen and his friends from seminary have made so many friends while visiting me that they'll be conducting regular chapel services from now on - who'd have thought how popular bible-study could become by incorporating bare chests, weightlifting and just a little bit of steam?

Unfortunately I can't say much more about the circumstances of my release, partly because it's unbecoming to boast of the Lord's goodness to me, but also because the people we've bribed would probably prefer a little discretion on my part. Let's just close the door on this little chapter by saying that if anyone finds me praying at the Presidential Inaugural Invocation then you'll know I really am the most opportunistic clergyman in history, but until then...

I'm Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

(And a very Merry Christmas to each and everyone of you. Don't forget to give you dogs, cats, partners, goldfish, children, axolotls, and tax accountant a big sloppy Christmas kiss from me. Or, as big Pete, Akinola would have us all wish each other:
Season's Greetings!!!)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

"The manna stopped the day after..." (Joshua 5:12)

Carried ever so faintly upon the breeze this morning was a strange keening sound: the cry of a Mercedes dealer somewhere in Nigeria wailing. Turning my head in a slightly different direction brought a different lament: that of a Ugandan property developer heartbroken at learning plans for an impressive diocesan mansion and “ministry complex” had been cancelled.

In fact all through the rest of today I could hear songs of misery arising from the far-flung corners of the GAFCON empire: the kind of deep grief only heard when snouts are being wrenched from the trough, and I can’t deny than an uneasiness began developing in my wise and righteous spirit.

Finally now all has just now been revealed to me in a missive from an inmate of the charming concentration camp known as Sydney Anglicanism. It seems the world’s recent economic unpleasantries have not so much touched little Peter Jensen’s domain as beaten it about the head with a stick.

Naturally little Peter’s serfs and relatives are doing all they can to keep this a secret, but the world’s richest diocese is about to start auctioning off the silverware after losing a paltry $68 million (Yes, you read that amount correctly, and No, there’s not going to be any punch line involving somebody’s late husband and the need to confidentially transfer it out of an Ivory Coast bank) in the kind of transactions for which Lehman Brothers shall go down in history.

What’s more, the impeccably-bred evangelical investment advisor responsible for the Jensen family-firm's decision to invest heavily in such sure-things as the U.S. sub-prime market appears to have been summarily relocated to “other ministry areas”, which is normally a subtle code for work involving the mining of salt, or locating land-mines with a bicycle pump and a few lengths of elastic.

All of which means, of course, that the rain of Sydney-scented manna which has thus far fallen upon the global faithful is about to dry up for good. Little Pete’s bond-servants (or “clergy” as they’re known elsewhere) have been told to forget about any additional funding in the coming year, and to instead prepare themselves for a big increase in future franchise fees parish assessments. Meanwhile a certain former son of Sydney now causing much mischief in Canada reportedly found a recent trip to drum up funding for his forthcoming legal battle to retain parish property far less rewarding than he had hoped, and doubtless more than a few lawyers for ACNE (or whatever the new not-a-province is called) will also find the well a lot shallower than they’d been led to believe. And what’s the bet Big Pete Akinola starts spending a lot less time at the pointy end of a plane?

I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Things are Worse than We Thought.

I’ve just finished reading Rev. Dr. Simons' State of the Diocese Report, which was delivered to the people of Pittsburgh this past weekend, and quite frankly I’m beyond being furious – I’m positively worried.

Everyone knows that the future of Anglicanism depends upon bigoted statements of breathtaking stupidity, naïve platitudes with no relationship to reality, and pompous self-righteous rhetoric. Just look at any GAFCON press release. Yet instead of any of these we see a balanced and empathetic analysis which is clearly the product of much thought and, dare I say it, a genuine understanding and respect for the Scriptures.

With people like Fr. Simons in the Church, Pittsburgh is in deeper trouble than any of us could have imagined – not only is he a scientist as well as a clergyman, but I suspect he even earned his doctorate by research and hard work. If compassion and reason of this magnitude are allowed to guide the Communion’s way forward we really do face a terrible future.

I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Everyone needs more than one interest.

It's a little known fact that ++Cantaur finds his part-time job with a very different kind of church much more enjoyable.

I'm Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Blame Bush, not Prayer

When it comes to praying, Bible-believers should understand that if you get what you asked for it’s always proof of God’s omnipotent power, as well as of your own unquestionable faith and righteousness - no matter how trivial your request.

If, on the other hand, nothing happens, the normal course of action is to piously mumble something about “obedience to our Father’s will” and never again breathe a word about the matter. Which is how many of my fellow-but-weaker Bible-believers have responded to last November’s election result.

Yet I believe it’s time for Faithful Christians to seize the upper hand in these matters. After all, why should the Liberals be the only ones enjoying the thrill of gloating? Sure we didn’t get what we hoped for – a vice-president who could have single-handedly saved the economy by selling nude pictures of themselves to Southern Baptists – but that’s still no reason to keep silent when opportunities to flaunt the superiority of our beliefs come begging.

Take for example George W. Bush’s latest pronouncement that “the Bible is probably not literally true”. Clearly the self-described “simple president” has given up trying to woo the Bible-belt. (which is perfectly understandable to anyone who’s ever tried to invite some of them around to the Rectory for a friendly evening of cards and porno movies), but I can’t for the life of me understand why everyone whose prayers for a Republican victory weren’t answered sn’t gleefully jumping up and down and pointing their fingers in blame at the cause of their requests having been denied.

Surely it’s obvious? The faithful were deceived by a party which had allowed the seed of unbelief to take root. Nothing was our fault, and there was certainly nothing wrong with Miss. Moose Maiden. God simply wouldn’t bless our grits because there were weevils in the cornflower. It was all their fault. Queers and Liberals are to blame once again. But together we’ve cleaned up and made a whole new start for Jesus with God’s mighty help. So please everyone, get behind us on this and….

See how simple it is to spin things one’s own way even if God didn’t exactly make it start raining cookies like you asked him to? Even more wonderful is how many people fall for this old routine no matter how many times they’ve heard it. Mark my words, you’ll be hearing it a lot more in about three-and-a-half years time.

I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Season's Greetings (Happy Holidays!)

The more times I read Big Pete’s Sunday Tribune interview, the more I appreciate his deep understanding of what really matters in this world. I’m particularly impressed with his tirade against inappropriate Christmas cards:
“As a matter of fact, I saw a card with the inscription, season greetings, and I said what season? Winter season or rainy season? If we are celebrating Christmas, then we are celebrating Christmas season, not any other season but the birth of the Christ.”
He’s absolutely correct of course: Christmas is the season of Christ: a time to mouth platitudes like “peace on earth and goodwill to all” which are, of course, completely irrelevant at any other time of the year. It’s a time to deck the halls with boughs of Holly (although this year both our parishioners named Holly fled town in late November, and so we’ve been forced to decorate the halls with Terri-Lea, LaFawnda, and a very handsome body-builder called “Blade”); to kiss strangers under the mistletoe (as well as to convince them that we really do have a part of our bodies called the mistletoe “down there”); and to purchase large and expensive presents for our Rector (are you paying attention Evangelical Eric????!!!).

It’s also a season for Holidays, since only pagans, Liberals, and Evangelical Curates work over Christmas. That’s why, as Archbishop and Esteemed Saviour of Christians Everywhere Akinola is so correct in being angry at people sending cards which say only “Seasons Greetings”. These fail to mention the whole point of the season, which is for virtuous men like myself and him to have a holiday. This Christmas I hope all of you will heed his message closely, and like me only send cards bearing the salutation “Happy Holidays”. In fact why not send Big Pete a card like that yourself: his address is: Archbishop's Palace , PO Box 212 ADCP , Abuja , NIGERIA. I am, and I know he’d love to hear from you also: I can already feel a warm glow from knowing how much he’ll appreciate receiving this greeting from all around the world, and anyone wanting to especially bless him can do much worse than follow the splendid suggestion from Nom de Plume on Thinking Anglicans and “include a request for bank information so he can receive the $150,000,000 left him by his long-lost gay uncle in America”. I’ve no doubt Akinola will be delighted to see how the decadent west has already learned so much from his province’s example.

I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Big Pete Speaks!

It’s a well known fact that nobody – not even little Martyn Minns - loves Big Pete Akinola as much as he loves himself, which makes me think that this marvellously sycophant interview with GAFCON’s number one son is actually the best example of multiple personality disorder since that Sally Field’s movie. Either that, or Big Pete’s holding some journalist’s sister as a hostage.

The piece was kindly brought to my attention by a commenter on an earlier post about Nigerian Faithfulness , and doesn’t it show our lad from Lagos eager to keep on the bearded fellow in Canterbury’s good side? And isn’t it reassuring to hear from the horse’s mouth that In this whole struggle, nothing is built around the person of Akinola” ? Even if he is unable to stop talking about himself at any point of the interview (and on more than one occasion deigns to refer to himself in the third person) – he’s absolutely correct: it’s built around a hatred of people who find themselves loving a person of the same physical gender

What really excites me, however, is the faithfulness with which Big Pete keeps his eyes of the little matter of people in his own country beating the stuffing out of each other in what Liberals continue calling a “bloodbath”, and instead steadfastly focuses on the speck in everyone else’s eye. As he rightly emphasizes, only one in twenty-five British Anglicans regularly attend church, and in the light of an outrage like that how dare anyone nit-pick about civil war, rampant corruption, and wholesale murder! If there’s one thing I’ve always said about GAFCON, it’s that we represent a return to Biblical priorities – albeit the ones found in the Book of Judges, or those advocated by the Pharisees.

At which point I’ll have to leave things for now: Big Pete’s talk about thousands being “so glued to this whole perversion” gave us here at St. Onuphrius a few interesting ideas to research, and Brother Richthofen and his friends from seminary have just returned from the hardware store with a caulking gun and an exciting new vision for parish bonding. What I must say in passing, however, is that I fail to see what all the fuss is about one of Big Pete’s Bishop’s having once been confronted by a lion in the middle of the road. I myself was once eaten by a bear in the middle of a night-club, and must say that – doubtless due to my own superior piety - I found the experience most illuminating.

I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Even back then...

“He wears his faith but as the fashion of his hat.”
Much Ado about Nothing, Act 1 Scene 1

I’d never realised they had politicians like George W. Bush in Shakespeare’s day.

I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Old Fashioned Nigerian Faithfulness.

Regular Nigeria watchers will be well aware that Christians and Muslims have once again been demonstrating the compassion and forgiveness of their respective traditions by killing each other. The causes behind this latest outburst of what Liberals pejoratively term “violence” are complex, but one can rest assured that leading Bible-teachers are at this moment working on finding a way of linking it back to western homosexuality and a certain Bishop in New Hampshire

In the face of this obvious by-product of western immorality, it’s been particularly heartened to see that Big Pete Akinola has not jumped on the bandwagon of Bible-deniers falling over themselves in the rush to condemn what is clearly just a case of honest Christians standing up for themselves and the gospel. While African news site This Day reports that the Pope, leading Nigerian politicians, the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs in Nigeria, and even the National President of Nigerian Baptists, have all spoken out against the violence, little Martyn Minns and his “special” big friend appear to have remained steadfastly silent, and certainly haven’t received a mention in any of the weekend’s African newspapers.

Which is how it should be – what possible fellowship can the light of Anglicanism’s future have with the likes of those speaking out against a little good old fashioned sectarianism? Whoever it was who said something about “Blessed are the peacemakers” certainly isn’t on the GAFCON Primates Council, nor do I recall them presenting an address to the faithful in Jerusalem this year. So I can’t for the life of me see why anyone should even suggest it could be relevant to a situation like this.

I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.