Monday, December 23, 2013

A Christmas (but don't call it that) Greeting for Liberal Protestants

Dearly beloved, I, (insert name of priest/bishop/archbishop of a liberal Protestant church of your choice)  your most reverend, most enlightened and of unquestionable authority wish you peace and happiness in this time of great joy:  namely, the birth of some person in Bethlehem.  (We don't want to offend anyone by using His name).

Today, on December 25, we recall the birth of the Sun God Mithras from his virgin mother because it is only for this reason that the stupid and patriarchal and intolerant of others' religions forefathers of the early church placed the birth of Jesus on this date--to compete and sheep steal.  We should really be celebrating in April or May but that's beside the point.  Your priest at your local parish will be ordered to give a 30 minute homily with a PowerPoint presentation on that very fact in due time.  Still, despite its inaccuracies, we wish you the best of the season.

Actually, come to think about it, we should really point out all the inaccuracies of this celebration because as Christians in the modern world it is far better and more appropriate to be skeptical and not actually believe what happened on that original December 25, though it was really happened in April or May.  First, virgin birth?  Yeah, right.  Contemporary scientists say that there is no possibility of anything close to parthenogenesis in human evolution and since they are the eye through which we see the world, I invite you, if you even say the Nicene Creed, to make that part optional.  Second, who was born in Bethlehem?  A teacher, a great teacher, a great human teacher.  Some say that God was born there, but that doesn't make sense and clearly reason is exactly what this teacher preached about time and again in his sermons as to how to be in communion with God.  I know he said faith a lot, but higher criticism, which is as infallible to us as the Pope is to those nutty Catholics who still actually believe him  to be the vicar of and speaker for Christ and His Church, which we are too enlightened to accept (but don't you dare criticize me or take a position opposite me;  I'll excommunicate you so fast it will make your head spin) is the same thing as reason.  Bart Ehrman assures me of such from almost no evidence whatsoever so that's good enough for me.  So, again, if you say the Nicene Creed, you may want to excise those portions that suggest that this person is God or even the Son of God.  It just doesn't make sense. On third thought, just don't say the Nicene Creed at all and take a stand against patriarchy!

Let us truly reflect and give thanks for this day, because that first X-Mas (We don't want to use "Christmas" because that term is obsolete and might offend non Christian readers of this little letter, even though it's not intended for them.  Please refrain from using this in public. Remember the first amendment!) brought to the attention of the world a horrible calamity:  homelessness.  This person was born homeless to make the point that all governments need to forcibly take money from the citizens in the form of taxes (rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar's) for all sorts of social programs to alleviate this horrible insult to human dignity.  Even though this person was not technically homeless since his family was from Nazareth and they couldn't find a hotel room (Expedia, anyone?), this is the Gospel message--to care for others less fortunate by bestowing on those more fortunate curses and vituperations.

On this day, we are called to be joyful, be happy and if it feels good, do it.  The birth of this person was to herald a new age of feeling good about ourselves and developing our self esteem.  Again, that darn creed suggests that the birth of this person was meant to save us from our sins and grant us salvation.  Sins? What sins?   If there's a recognition of sin, then what follows?  That's right--repentance.  And we don't want that.  It's too much work.  Besides, you can't possibly be responsible for any sins.  God made you that way.  Just accept it.  Unless, of course, you're a Republican and against gay marriage, gay adoption, women's ordination, 100% tax on rich people, etc.  If so, YOU have plenty of repenting to do.

X-mas is about indulging and family (i.e. non-traditional family) and consumerism but not too much.  I sincerely hope all of you remembered to research your purchases and make sure they weren't going to  big, greedy corporations. It is about giving.  It is about political activism.  That is the reason this person was born.

So, to all of you who celebrate today, I wish you  a very Merry X-Mas.  I also wish you a belated Hannukah and Kwanza wishes since I know many people in our churches have decided to be multicultural and diverse and celebrate everything even though it is contradictory.  Even if you don't believe anything of note happened today, that's OK.  Doctrine is yesterday's Christianity.  I don't believe in it so why should you?  As long as you believe something, it's all Christian, as long as it is not what people believed 50 or 100 or 1000 years ago.  Those are WRONG beliefs.  Still, Merry X-Mas and best wishes for the new year.

In the name of ______________ (insert non-Christian deity here or philosopher),


P.S.  After the festivity and joy of the holidays have passed, we plan on suing several parishes and dioceses that have still chosen to remain stuck in the mud when it comes to doctrine which is not relevant anymore.  Please feel free to include a check to help us bring these parishes to their knees so that we can evict them and then sell their property to non-Christians resulting in a huge financial loss in the process.  Thank you.

NB:  THIS POST IS INTENDED AS SARCASM.  Please make a note of that.

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