Posts Tagged ‘fashion’

A couple of weeks ago, we wrote on the Wall about a quaint church in Beaumont, Texas making international news by calling themselves, “A bunch of jerks.”

They addressed the hypocrisy among the faithful, the stigma in the Church and the elephant dropping bombs in the room.

If it ain't broke, buy another one.

It was a bold move because the biggest cause of Atheism would be Christians who do not reflect Christ. Great idea, right? Apparently so, because it’s been cloned according to the Christian Post.

A megachurch [NorthRidge Church] in Southeast Michigan is making a lot of people uncomfortable with its new billboard campaign that proclaims that the church is for hypocrites, losers and liars.

Well, of course, they are making a lot of people uncomfortable… the formula worked once before. Why not do it again?

“The reality is all human beings are the same. They’re flawed. We’re all the same inside [the church] and outside. We too are failures, losers, … hypocrites,” [Pastor Brad Powell of NorthRidge Church] continued.

“Jesus didn’t put up higher fences in heaven to keep the bad people out,” he said. “Rather, Jesus came down to earth and dwelled among the people. When you look into God’s word, He never turns inward. He turns outward.”

Don’t get me wrong… he’s right. Regretfully.

However, just because the word changed from “jerks” to “hypocrites,” does not make this an original idea. There’s no such thing as an original idea anyway, but at least give it a few months before you poach it?!

It’s no secret I don’t have much affinity for stereotypical Christian marketing. I mean, how difficult must it be to take a well-known brand and make an evangelism hack job out of it?

Christian marketing usually means copied marketing.

Oh. The scripture. That'll make us forget about the familiar logo.

Consider God: There was nothing but his idea. He imagined with vivid detail, molded the earth with complete ingenuity and relished in the unique nature of his creation.

He didn’t copy a logo. He didn’t “borrow” an invention. Everything he did was an original.

And that’s why it baffles me that marketing and advertising professionals who love the Lord and have dedicated their lives to him can’t at least go about their trade with a tad more originality.

Brands like ‘Not of this World‘ have taken what ‘Affliction’, ‘Silver Star’ and ‘MMA Elite’ has done for the mixed martial artist crowds and brought it to the Church. Bravo.

And then, there is the status quo that believes take what is known, plaster a verse on it and call it “divine providence.”

We can do better. We must do better.

Pastor Brad (imagine, he doesn’t like being called that) understands this whole “jerk” thing is lightning in a bottle. Everyone is looking at this. Everyone appreciates this. Because everyone agrees with this… except for the folk who are this.

A thought for all pastors: Be unconventional. Be daring. And most importantly, try to be original. You tend to make more news that way.

Just ask the little church in Beaumont, Texas about that one.

By the looks of national TV ratings, not many people have been watching the “Miss USA” pageant for the past… decade.

And with the exception of Carrie Prejean and her Christian eh, purchased endowments, no one on earth could name the last nine Miss USAs, save Donald Trump. And he could only do it with his wife’s help.

Enter newly crowned Miss USA 2010 Rima Fakih. Come on down! You’re the contestant on “Something is just not right.”

Sure, she's cute... but look behind her mosque.

According to ABC News (and the aforementioned link… with video), the triumphant walk for the new Miss USA took her straight into controversy as a Muslim woman who flaunts her beauty, and who once flaunted it so well she won a stripper contest.

Shortly after the release of pictures showing Fakih cradling a dozen roses across her strapless white dress while balancing a shimmering tiara on her head, came photos of Fakih in red short shorts, a tiny tank top and towering stilettos while balancing against a pole.

Fakih won the “Stripper 101” contest which was sponsored by a Detroit radio show Mojo in the Morning in 2007.

Well, good times. Had this mess came out about Prejean before the gay marriage hullabaloo, she would have been lampooned. But then again, her mouth and insatiable appetite deserved that ire anyway.

But here is this nice little Muslim girl, and because we can’t hate on any other religion sans those associated Jesus Christ, this ‘private dancer’ gets a pass for earning a quick buck.

Keep it classy, America.

However, since Christians aren’t allowed to espouse any views against this flashdance, then what about her homies in Hezbollah? According to FOX News, meh?

In an interview Tuesday with Lebanese television, Hezbollah official Hassan Fadlallah reportedly had few glowing words to describe Fakih, who became the first Muslim American on Sunday to secure the crown. “The criteria through which we evaluate women are different from those of the west,” Fadlallah told the television station, AFP reported.

In other words, “We haven’t seen the tape yet, but when we do, her USO tour will be interesting.”

Of course, even comparing her with Hezbollah, the hub for terrorism is a farce… and a conservative one at that. Thanks CNN:

“Absolutely not,” Fakih told CNN’s Octavia Nasr. “That is a stereotype and a prejudiced statement made by only one reporter who had made that title before I was crowned Miss USA.” The blogger’s accusation “was completely made up out of her own prejudiced mind,” she said.

So, back to the stripping.

Anyone outraged by this? Not so much because only the people who work for Donald Trump and the families of contestants seem to watch this mess any longer.

However, it is alarming how many people aren’t talking about this. Typically, that number directly reflects the many people who were lighting their torches and arming themselves with pitchforks over what we believed was a kind-hearted Christian speaking her mind and faith.

Can anyone say, “Double standard.”

What Fakih is no more worse than half the women who begin as drunken troglodytes during Spring Break and end up as fodder for “Girls Gone Wild” or something they will surely regret when they reach… sobriety.

Heck, she was wearing more clothes in the video than on stage during the swim suit competition. The premise is the flagrant double standard.

The winners of this competition used to be positioned for role model-hood. Entertaining the masses while showing girls around the world how to be a dignified woman with purpose and passion.

Instead, with the inclusion of silicon valley (no, not the tech place in California) and scruples so elastic, I could slingshot a canoe with them, the Miss USA contest is no more than a contest for 15 minutes and an opportunity to get lots of swag in the name of yourself.

Is that the Arab-American way? Nah, but she’s a step in the right direction. Unfortunately.

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).

This month in the mad dash around the world for the face of God, we find ourselves in Scotland (Shout out to Bene D).

Glascow, to be exact, where God was not only seen… but looking back at his creation in the most vile of acts. Now I realize God is omnipotent and omnipresent, so hiding from the Spirit of God while in the club, at that certain someone’s house or erstwhile gallivanting in sin is ridiculous.

Courtesy: John Gunion, "The Sun"

Courtesy: John Gunion, "The Sun"

However, there is one place I wish God didn’t see me (and forgive the candor, but tagging on this Wall is about being real). That’s right, the dreaded Number 2. Amen, somebody?

I mean, while you are blue-knuckling it and playing a nice game of Tetris on your iPhone is not where you want to see the Almighty staring back at you.

Nonetheless, there he is, catching a bathroom glare at the neighborhood IKEA according to WOW News’ The Telegraph (UK).

There is some debate over whether the face truly represents the Son of Man, or whether it is in fact Gandalf out of the Lord of the Rings, or even a member of ABBA.

Okay, that line… genius!

Now whether this mug shot was a wise old warlock, a beatnik 80s roller skate band member or even the Shroud of Turin, the last place I need to see a pictograph within three inches of my face is while I am dropping a deuce.

“I was only heading to the toilet and I found God,” one shopper told the Telegraph . “It’s certainly not what you expect to find in an Ikea store. Mind you, you need a little divine intervention to get out of here sometimes.”

I’ve heard of stranger places to have a sacred experience, but have mercy! Imagine the sales and marketing team of this global chain, “On sale now. The second coming… in a store near you.”

Ah yes. It’s back – Christian marketing.

A while back, Wall Watchers were bemused by a visual onslaught of lovely t-shirts and branding that’s the equivalent of a six-year-old with crayons watching commercials. Today, we find a story that makes the church look a skosh better and a tad more current.

Celebrity endorsements, how novel. But who? Would you believe the Newsboys on a pair of Chuck Taylor Converse All-stars?! I know!

Hey now, you're an all-star... wait, that's not their song!?

Hey now, you're an all-star... wait, that's not their song!?

The band who almost began “borrowing” something for the secular [Originally, their name was “The News” in the 80s, but Huey Lewis may have had something to say] now dawns the most sacred and regaled kicks on the market.

Nice.

“The opportunity to be associated with Converse Chuck Taylor All Stars is exciting,” says newsboys [sic] manager Wes Campbell. “I have personally worn them for years. newsboys is a great choice to break into this market. We launched the shoes on newsboys’ current The Way We Roll Tour, which kicked off October 1 in Greensboro and will run through mid-November.”

Nice plug for the tour, Wes. Only one small issue, boys.

Before you can “Shine” with these shoes, you may want to sell them on your Web site’s store. Just sayin’.