Archive for August 14, 2008

Huh?!

Apparently, high gas prices have gotten the best of arguably the most successful Christian touring bus group in… ever as the Gaithers have officially sold out.

No, not on their beliefs – they are too tried and true for that. I mean, as in the commercialism of the Gospel, according to the hilarious story from LarkNews.com.

In a world where prayer is as instant as coffee, blessings are as expected as the rent and the scripture is as lukewarm as an ice bath; the world-famous “Gaither Homecoming” Tour is holding its next acclaimed production in Bentonville, Ark. to attract the eye of well, the entire city?

Yeah, as in the global headquarters of Wal-Mart. In a word? Genius! Puh-lease.

You don’t think they will sell more DVDs and CDs of that Homecoming than maybe all of their others put together… in the first month? Say what you will, Wal-Mart is a fine oiled machine and the Gaithers have an audience as loyal as Green Bay Packer or New York Yankee fans. Those two together make for a lovely recipe that will create for some “fat” dividends.

“The combination of gospel favorites and a celebration of low prices is a welcome theme to our audience,” says Gaither. “For believers, coming to Wal-Mart is like coming home.”

Oh, Lord have mercy! Are you telling me the PR machine of Wal-Mart already got Bill Gaither TALKING POINTS?! Look at the seasoned brother getting nice by towing the company line. Work your jelly, brother. I just wonder who is preaching the message at the concert? Larry the Cable Guy exclaiming “You know what Jesus did with my sins? He got ‘er done.” IJS.

No offense to Wal-Mart. Believe me, I am a frequent supporter of its ministry, but come on Bill! I know what’s in my home and some of the dregs that I have bumped into trolling the aisles of America’s low price leader are not what I would consider “take home to see mama” material.

Ah well, this possible last hurrah gives an entirely new meaning to “Redeemed” (as in coupons) and “I’m free” (as in most of the other stuff on its endcaps). Good times, indeed.

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Look honey. A seat with no spillage. Goody-goody.

This week has been entertaining down in Houston for Joel and Victoria Osteen.

First, on the first Sunday back to church blubbering was a player, thanks were abounding and all that… from Joel. All the while, Victoria Osteen stood as if she was frozen in that Han Solo carbonite, only without the beef stew surrounding her like poor ol’ Han.

Next, we have more insight to Vicky’s hissy fit that led an offered (but not delivered) spurious apology, fake “Tammy Fay” tears and a show for all to see. Oh yeah, and something about the pastors of Lakewood Church being Satan incarnate.

Evidently, a “show” was indeed what occurred because three other privileged, beautiful people testified THEY DIDN’T SEE A THING, as noted here by the Houston Chronicle. Looks like Sharon Brown’s grab bag law suit may be the rest of our money these days – full of gas!

“There wasn’t anything that occurred that she could be suing over,” said Laura Knoppe, who was sitting in the first row of first-class seats, closest to where the alleged attack took place.

Knoppe, who was called by Victoria Osteen’s attorney, Rusty Hardin, told jurors she never heard Osteen yelling or screaming. She also testified that she had a good view of the bathroom door that Brown claims Victoria Osteen threw her against.

“Did that happen?” Hardin asked. “No,” Knoppe responded.

Another passenger, Barbara Shedden, who had been called by Brown’s attorney, described the interaction that Brown and Victoria Osteen had on the plane as “just a power of the wills. It was very authoritative on both parts.”

A “power of the wills”?! Seriously? The way this is folding out in court, it sounds more like a MMA pay-per-view! However, our reliable complainant – who was so innocent and forthcoming with the race card – seems to have a propensity for being a bit of a sue-happy biyatch herself.

Just before he rested his case, {Osteen lawyer, Rusty] Hardin showed jurors a videotaped deposition of Claudia Hall, a former Continental Airlines flight attendant and gate agent who says she was falsely accused by Brown of hitting and pushing her into the bathroom wall of a plane in November 1995.

“I definitely did not get very angry,” said Hall about the incident over a missing ticket. “I did not hit her.”

Oh, good God. Would someone please end this thing? What will happen is what usually happens when a socialite is in court: win the case in the courtroom (money always does), lose the case in court of public opinion (there’s only so much fluff Joel can write that will cover your tarnished behind, Vicky) and we all live happily ever after.

Poor Rusty Hardin. Now only if he could discover that Brian McNamee “planted” needles ridden with horse ‘roids under other baseball players TV sets, Roger Clemens may be back in baseball today. Yeah, can’t win them all!

I have gone through several drafts of this story because it definitely belongs as some serious “writing on the Wall” for its stain on the face of faith, but it absolutely breaks my heart and the knack for biting witticisms to make light of a situation is impossible.

PARENTS take the life of their own child – a toddler no less – because he wouldn’t say “Amen” after a prayer. That’s it! So for his trouble, he was found in a suitcase outside of Philadelphia. The horrid story is here sparing with the details… thankfully.

Ria Ramkissoon, the mother of Javon Thompson, was charged Sunday with first-degree murder in the boy’s death. Baltimore police said Monday that three other members of a group called 1 Mind Ministries have also been charged with first-degree murder. Police and Ramkissoon’s family say the group is a cult.

Ya’ think? Well, actually no.

See, what is also tragic about stories like this is when the people that find the body or those that read the story believe that peoplesorry, pathetic witlings and wastes of perfectly-good DNA like this perform such heinous acts that they do it in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth instead of whatever halfwit demon they are currently worshiping.

You say “cult”, they think “religion” and often the underlying factor is “Why would GOD allow it?” And that is one of life’s imponderables – God created man with the ability to reason and made a covenant not to override that. Because of that, IMHO, we are his greatest triumph and yet his most challenging obstacle.

Exhibit A being these prime candidates for a lethal needle. Tragic. However, if you look real closely on the horizon, there is a glimmer of irony and of hope for the life of poor Javon. He was murdered for not saying “Amen” and when the judge throws the hammer down (and the proverbial book at the parents in this sardonic cult), he will read the verdict for the death penalty without remorse and say “So be it.”

Ironically, that’s what “Amen” means.

I once heard a preacher say, “The ministry would be perfect work if it weren’t for people.”

Well, they can be a tad annoying at times (just watch any Red Carpet event, a PETA pep rally or those people that bring whiny toddlers to an R-rated dramaer, a PG-13 comedy). Suffice to say, their antics can cause a few gray hairs to sprout on your follicle chia-pet. Few pastors know that more than this guy:

Meet Pastor Albert Finley.

You see, before he retired last month, he was a senior pastor for five decades! That’s a lot of babay kids, jacked-up folk, building fund campaigns and Christmas pageants. Oy! You can imagine the stress he has endured for the Gospel, the pain he has seen and the hair he has lost.

So upon his retirement, I would presume an article in the local paper would show up about his faithful service to the community, his undying allegiance to his church and his constant diligence for his people. You know, a big “We love ya’ Pastor” advertisement or something. Right? Not so much.

No, what makes the paper was his celebratory drink. Dude remembered all that stress, headed straight to where nobody knows his name and had a beer! What the…

“What a marvelous drink,” he says. “It tastes much better than it smells.”

He waited 50 long, tedious years for his big retirement bash and THAT is what makes the news?! His first brew. Nice. Way to honor the public servants, Maine. But hey, it’s the Church, what else would HiScrivener expect?

Hey, while you’re at it pastor, why not visit a kegger at the local frat house and show these punk kids that Gramps can still get down. After all, you’re building up a tolerance:

“My dad always told me you could get drunk off of one sip, and I preached that for decades,” he says. “I thought that’s why people on beer commercials were having such fun. But that’s completely untrue. I’ve had one, even two beers with no effect.”

What a legacy… you have absolutely throttled because you just had to see what all the hype was about and get your suds on. Stay classy, pastor. You’re gonna’ need it after the hangover.

The people who are so capricious and looney that they made pet-loving a crime of passion have chosen someone of a higher order to pick on – your favorite Pope and mine, B16.

No, no. It’s true. Look here for more information.

What? They ran out of D-bags walking Rodeo Drive in search for that full-length sable coat (in the middle of August no less) to pour red paint on?

Now that every leather-wearing, cow-eating, uncaged-chicken-frying person on either coast shoots first and asks questions later, the animal rights group has decided to make a jaunt for safety across the ocean in search for headlineser, for another cause.

Evidently, the Pope has an affinity for cats and remarkably, he wears a lot of fur. Hmmmm… someone call Geraldo!

Corriere della Sera newspaper had photos Benedict and one of his predecessors, Pope John XIII, wearing an ermine-trimmed hat and cape. It put the shots next to a picture of a live stoat. Ermine is the white winter fur of the stoat, which has been used to trim the crowns, ceremonial hats and robes of European royalty, aristocrats, judges and popes for centuries.

So, Il Papa wants to rock the Santa Claus look. They’re both of German descent, maybe it runs in the family? You know it’s bad enough Pope Benedict’s penchant for fashion has been under the ire of Mr. Blackwell because he likes to get nice on the dance floor, now he has to deal with people asking for pictures of Snowball to ensure she just “hasn’t lost a lot of weight.”

Give the guy a break. He’s the Pope, not Ralph Lauren. He makes a modest salary, drives a hooptie and has to get his robes bedazzled because he can’t afford the real stuff. You know, gas prices. Besides, his old, frumpy ears get cold in the winter. What’s a pontiff to do?