Posts Tagged ‘episcopal’

I'm too sexy for my Clerics

Am I the only fop that hasn’t seen this about a once-famous girl idol gone swiftly into a realm where no Episcopalian has ever gone before?

Meet Barbie – only she found Jesus… or perhaps raided Madonna’s reject collection. Check out the threads.

Our fashion model is rocking the latest in Episcopal Vicar wear today. Fresh from her spa appointment, the heifers munching on their Funyuns were saying, “Faw-faw-faw-faw-faw.”

And if there mouths weren’t pushing maximum density, I’m certain that would sound like, “Girl, when I get with Jesus, that’s exactly how I’m going to church.”

From WOW News’ Religion News Service:

The 11.5-inch-tall fictional graduate of Church Divinity School of the Pacific in Berkeley, Calif., has donned a cassock and surplice and is rector at St. Barbara’s-by-the-Sea in (where else?) Malibu, Calif.

She arrived at the church fully accessorized, as is Barbie’s custom. Her impeccably tailored ecclesiastical vestments include various colored chasubles (the sleeveless vestments worn at Mass) for every liturgical season, black clergy shirt with white collar, neat skirt and heels, a laptop with prepared sermon and a miniature, genuine Bible.

I doubt this is an evangelism tool from Mattel, so why in heaven do this? Do the dolts running this age-old brand really believe they will up their market share with this – Episco-Barbie?!

Turns out our evangelical babe isn’t from Mattel at all. It’s a gift from Rev. Julie Blake Fisher, an Episcopal priest in Kent, Ohio to her friend, fellow female priest, Rev. Dena Cleaver-Bartholomew, rector of Christ (Episcopal) Church, in Manlius, N.Y., near Syracuse.

“I got a phone call from my husband who said a large package had arrived; Julie had told me that she was making something for me. She used to be a dressmaker and she makes gorgeous stoles, so I thought she was making me a stole,” said Cleaver-Bartholomew. “When I came home and there was this enormous box, I knew it wasn’t just a stole!”

Fisher had made Episcopal Priest Barbie and a few vestments two years ago for the children in her parish to dress. And now, homely girls everywhere are asking Santa Jesus for this doll. (Incense not included).

You know, this is actually a smart move because as all divas know, black works with everything.

For the Jesus aficionados searching for the latest trinket for your little princess, I wonder what’s next [cue harp music]:

  1. Pentecostal Barbie – She can have the same raggedy hair and little girls will save money as they make her clothes too.
  2. Baptist Barbie – As the women serve in various outreaches, now they know they can look smart and work those pumps.
  3. Jehovah’s Witness Barbie – Good thing it’s only a doll because – like the real-life version – this one won’t talk in church either.
  4. Megachurch Barbie – Accessorize for the Lawd! And, when anorexia hits, rock the clerics and hide those stretch marks, girls.
  5. Mormon Barbie – She will work the Vicar look head-to-toe, only hers will be in 100% polyester. (Pair of Missionary Kens definitely not included).
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Ever been to an Oscar-watching party? Yeah… uh… me, neither.

But if I had, I could tell you watching the beautiful people is typically secondary compared to figuring out all those non-promoted, artsy-fartsy (or agenda-laden) movies that made the cut. And then, based on acting and box-office success, the ones that didn’t.

In this piece from ABC News, we see I’m not the only one who was perplexed this year.

Some people get to walk the red carpet based on reputation alone. “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” was a Woody Allen film, but really?! I think you could set an egg timer on how long that flick was in theaters, but I guess a screening was enough to get a nomination. That, and a producer with a reputation, because I saw it… woof!

fireproofAnd then, there was “Fireproof”.

I mean, who’da thunk that Kirk Cameron would be the one instigating this debate. But he is because that movie outgrossed most of the heavy hitters who won awards, even “Slumdog Millionaire.”

Granted, it’s an acting competition not an earning competition.

However, that movie was no “The Omega Code.” It had substance. It had a theme. It had people in theaters for more an opening weekend. And oh, it had Jesus in the movie not appearing as a curse word.

And now, there is this Christian movie “The Secrets of Jonathon Sperry” that has Hollywood, dare I say, “buzzing”? So, enter the director with a few sage thoughts:

“Why is it we watch movies with nudity and all this stuff we know we shouldn’t? I’ll tell you why, because Hollywood rules, not Jesus,” Christiano [the director] said to the crowd. “Pastors, I’m telling you, this is the fight, this is what’s going to steal your youth group; this is what’s busting up your marriages. This is the fight. I need you to stand with us.”

Regardless of what side of the political aisle you reside, there are actually families who are tired of seeing only Pixar movies with the kiddos. They want… well, real people in a movie and not have to worry about covering eyes and ears or having to discuss one of those in flagrante dilecto scenes on the way home.

Now, this director is more than some dude reading Zig Ziglar books. He’s trying to create a movement that started with “The Passion of the Christ” up to now.

“George Lucas supposedly said the church, which used to be all powerful, has been usurped by film. And he’s right,” Christiano said. “The devil knows all this, and he has used films to break down this country; it’s a very powerful tool.”

Christian TVBring it, brother! If this guy can back up with mouth with a well-made movie, the Church may have a winner winner chicken dinner.

Christian movies get grassroots support. Evangelicals, Catholics, Pentecostals, Episcopalians and the rest of the God-loving horde go see a movie touting Jesus Christ and biblical principles. But now, the quest is to get the critics to not only see them, but write favorably about them and encourage others to go see them.

Now, on a personal note, I just have to get over our hopes are now collectively pinned upon… Gavin “Captain Stubbing of the Love Boat” McLeod who is the septagenarian in the starring role. Gulp!

Maybe TBN will louse this thing up after all? Let us pray.

Every company is revisiting marketing strategies, PR outreach and advertising budgets. If your income blows, how are you going to get more if no one knows your name.

Kinda’ like the anti-Cheers.

Among churches, there is a trend – if your denomination has the cash, spend it to put butts in seats.

Megachurches don’t have that issue because it doesn’t seem they have an agenda. You know, aside from the sundry few who are looking to fatten their wallets (we know who you are).

But for the mainstream, the monotonous and seemingly, the moth-eaten, folk aren’t interested so marketing budgets are the new investment, the new “building fund,” according to this story by the Washington Times.

The perfect preacherYou have the United Methodist Church pouring $20 million into this country so we can “Rethink Church.”

And then, the Evangelical Lutheran Church is spending a paltry $1.2 million to keep up with the Methodist Joneses with “God’s Work, Our Hands.” (sniff sniff).

But, let’s not forget the rolling stone that began gathering all this moss – the Episcopal Church, who brilliantly deciphered the mysteries of marketing the Gospel into “Get closer to God. Slice Carrots.” Eh… what the… is up with that, doc?

So, why all the cash influx to the American economy and TV sets everywhere?

From 1990 to 2008 alone, mainline Protestants dropped from 18.7 percent to 12.9 percent of the population, according to the American Religious Identification Survey.

People are tired of having to interpret the malestrom created thanks to “religious” versus “Christian.” And the only reason why this is a debated topic is because most people these who call themselves “religious” are not at all “Christian.”

stupidityYou know the types:

  • ignoring most of the Bible to create a personal doxology (cough… homosexuality in the pulpit… cough),
  • using the Bible to get paid
  • and implementing the Bible as a battering ram to hurl people into the pit of hell without offering some of the love in the Good Book.

I wonder if another brick on the wall, “Church Marketing Sucks” has heard about this tempest because it that sound you hear is a large vacuum among advertisers. Suuuuuuuuuck!

So, what is this really indicative of: people losing interest in church or just losing interest on lazy people who don’t want to do everything God recommends?

On the street there is an adage, “Keep it real.”

Instead of trying to be fully versed in scripture for sanctimony, perhaps Christians need to start sagging, beat boxing and tagging other walls (outside of this one, of course) because “keeping it real” seems to be just what the Father ordered.

And it’s free. What a PR guru Jesus is.

Everything is on the rise in this tumultuous economy – energy, food, clothes and school.

Even if a couple wants to tie the knot, they have to visit the local Justice of the Peace to make public (and legal) their vows of love, and also to save some major cheddar.

In the words of that sage, Danny DeVito, “Everyone needs money; that’s why they call it money.”

You priced out a wedding lately? The facilities, the officiant, the frilly decorations, the bad hotel food and the Valium you get upon the bill being printed.

That knowledge helps me relish this story, when despite the ills of life, true love has a place… if only Grace Episcopal Church in D.C.’s Georgetown neighborhood felt the same.

Living under the bridge over troubled water??

Living under the bridge over troubled water??

Meet the betrothed couple in question: Dante White & Nhiahni Chestnut – both in love, with each other, out of work and without a home. BUT, they got married.

“I was basically living from day to day, trying to survive, and I wound up meeting him,” Chestnut told AFP at the couple’s wedding, held in the tiny chapel of Grace Episcopal Church in Washington’s Georgetown neighborhood.

Sweet, right? Hold that thought.

At a recent Bible study at the aformentioned church, White mentioned in passing the joy of being married, if only he had the cash.

“In good Grace church congregation fashion, everyone got behind the idea: one person managed flowers, I helped with the wedding rings, one woman made the cake, someone helped with the tux and someone else with the bride’s gown,” she [some chic who goes to the church] said.

So, sweet now? Not so much.

The church paid for the wedding, rented the threads, made the cake and even sent them on a honeymoon. Only one thing… THEY ARE STILL HOMELESS.

How about thinking ahead Grace Church? Let’s keep it classy.

Maybe a trip to Tahiti can wait for… oh, I don’t know… an efficiency apartment in the friggin’ city! Are you kidding me? No one considered these two that way?

Kinda thins the blood of the pulse of this ministry, eh?

Sure, “love will keep us together” but the streets will rip any couple apart. Simply unconsicousable. But if I may wax eloquent:

Who, being loved, is poor? ~ Oscar Wilde

My vote (and soon coming prayers) would be for this couple. Sigh.

100 days. Oh, how fast they have gone. And what do we have to show for them?

Well, in case you have no clue, our President will be reminding you of those accomplishments with tonight’s news conference (except on FOX – gee, ya’ think that’s not a political “bite me”? Shameful).

Perhaps, the two things you won’t hear our fearless leader discuss is “What the eff was that fool doing with his plane buzzing the tower at Ground Zero?!” (I mean, stupid!) and anything about his faith.

obama_matrixAfter all, he did go out of his way to court the Christian vote, so at least we should be kept apprised of his ecumenical exploits as he dodges every vitriol-ridden bullet in the media (note the picture). So, thanks to U.S. News & World Report, we have the Top 10 Obama Faith Moments.

[Cue timpani drum roll and away we go… until the next 100 day countdown is over]

10. Faith Round Table at the Inauguration – Although Rick Warren really shined during his inauguration prayer, others representing “faith” did not so much including Gene Robinson, the first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal church. You know, he believes in the entire Bible… save a few scriptures found in the Old Testament. Too-mato, Toe-mah-to. Meh?

9. Saving his First Presidential Interview for an Arabic Network – I’m thinking he would like a redo on this, because his communications team took a beating for this faux-pas. He became a pugilist fighting the rumor mill about Barack Obama beginning life as Barack X, and then he does this?! I get his heritage, but you have 300 million people who hold that part of you with complete subjection. Even CNN & MSNBC wanted to cuss him out.

8. Lifting the Ban on “Family Planning” Groups South of the Border – Otherwise known as the “Mexico City Policy” (get it?), Obama went straight after the scowl of anti-abortion groups. Evidently, his “new Democratic tack on abortion” had nothing to do with Democracy. I didn’t get a vote. You? And he even did it on the Roe V. Wade anniversary. So sweet.

7. Praying with the Troops – This is highly commendable. Although it’s outside D.C., when Obama shows up at a mucho vetted and notably commissioned rally, it opens in prayer. Now, granted, if Bush would have done this, it would have been the Apocalypse, but eh… at least God gets his props, so it’s a wash for me.

6. Faith-based Office Redux – Bush created it. Obama obliterated it. The Office of Faith Based and Community Initiatives, um… Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships is our President’s take on what this sacred seat should be. Oh sure, his goal is to make churches hire ANYONE outside of faith, but hopefully activist groups will stand up. Oh… they’re still sitting down on this issue… OK, well, enjoy your new, interesting cube mates at your church gig.

obama-change5. Faith-based, Non-surgical Enhancements – So, after he dumbed down the Faith-based office to focus on Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood and singing Kumbaya with Imams, Rabbis, Kohens, Buddhists Monks and those fools selling insurance in airports, Obama decided to create a “Faith Advisory Council.” This group of esteemed, ecumenical insiders would basically do the same job the aforementioned choral group would do. Only know, they have their own stationery. At least they feel important, which is why we really use taxpayer money. Isn’t that what really matters?

4. Joe Biden Gets Ashy – Catholics around the world observe Lent, not just out of necessity, but it’s sarcosanct. They don’t need a presser, news conference or the like, but good ol’, train-driving Joe “Veep” Biden had to make his trip to the conclave a photo opportunity (and don’t think it was anything otherwise). Faith is important, even in the White House. But isn’t there a scripture or two about putting your alms before men? Maybe it’s just me. Good thing his lotion was handy. That stuff is a pain to get out of freshly copied confidential memos, or so I’ve heard.

3. Petal Up for Those Stems – It was expected, but not so soon after Obama took his oath, he reversed Bush’s limits on federal funding for embroynic stem-cell research. See, people equate offering up stem cells for “research” as granting access to a womb of an eight-month child in utero. Legalistic for some. Malevolent for many. But prayerfully, God’s Word prevails here: “As for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.” If there is a sacrifice to be made, let it count for something.

2. Catholics Fight for their Nourishing Mother – Many presidents have given commencement speeches, but when Obama made public he was jet-setting to Notre Dame, the Catholic Church freaked out. He may be the nation’s president (yes, whether you voted for him or not… so please stop with the anti-American drivel), but he is not going to win a “Papal Favorite Guy” contest any time soon. Pity. I’ll bet Obama would rock the Papal robes and bling.

1. Jive “Turkey” – Not only was his first TV interview reserved for a Muslim network, but his first presidential appearance in a foreign land was in a Muslim nation. Don’t get me wrong, and I have argued many times that Muslims – although we differ theologically – are wonderful, amazing human beings. However, look at this from a Judeo-Christian, we-hate-terrorists-and-lump-them-into-the-global-Muslim-gene-pool perspective. If I have learned anything in my craft, it’s “Perception is reality.” No, it’s not fair, but you can’t tell 300 million people what they see isn’t actually what they think. The longest 18 inches in the world is the path from someone’s brain to their heart. You “feel” me?