(Written after my nephew’s Christmas pageant in 2008).
I made it out here to California for a nice little Christmas vacation on a Thursday afternoon. Being the cool Uncle that I am I went to pick my nephew up at school (I think it is a Lutheran school or something) where I was informed that he was going to be in the Christmas pageant as a Shepard that Sunday. Of course I was going to have to go but I was a little annoyed at the idea of having to attend church since I haven’t stepped into a church for a non-wedding related event in over a decade. Thinking about going made me fear that I would burst into flames on the steps or be struck down by a magical lightening bolt from the anus of the little baby Jesus doll used in the manger scene. Thankfully none of that happened and I made it through the play and the service okay but of course I came away with some observations.
1) When did Churches get better multimedia equipment than most schools? When I was growing up as a Catholic kid we went to church and had to sit through a service that included a lot of talking, some singing, and a lot of kneeling. This church had a massive screen with music videos, a power point presentation, and video replay. I guess the word of God doesn’t trump our horribly short attention spans anymore. Furthermore where in the bible does it say, “Help the poor out but only after you dump fifty grand on a massive multimedia system?”
2) If you are male and run a church choir are you automatically repressing your blatant homosexuality? The choir director or the pageant producer or whatever you want to call the guy running the show talked to the congregation before the show started. As soon as he opened his mouth I thought, “This guy totally loves balls bouncing off of his chin.”
I whispered to my mother, “That is pretty progressive that they have a gay choir director here.”
My mom replied telling me that he wasn’t gay and was married with a few children. I guess becoming the choir director at a church to repress your homosexual cravings is the non catholic equivalent to becoming a priest.
3) Screw Michael W. Smith.
That guy apparently records every piece of religious music out there and he has to be making a killing off of licensing that these churches have to pay. I wish I could sing a song over some crappy stock movie footage and sell it to churches.
4) The meaning of Christmas comes laced with political meanings. So this wasn’t your typical standard Christmas pageant, this was a full blown musical about how people have lost the meaning of Christmas. Okay, fine I can get down with that, but the play went on to cover a few other topics such as:
-If you have religious tolerance or respect other religions you technically don’t believe in anything because you don’t have complete faith in one thing. (aka if you don’t believe in Jesus go fuck yourself)
-That the mayor in the play and the town people were in trouble because they wouldn’t let the characters in the play have their pageant in the town square. Basically if you couldn’t display your beliefs for all the town to see everyone else was going to suffer.
Really? Is this something I need shoved down my throat at a kid’s Christmas pageant? Couldn’t we just have the whole Jesus birth story and not the overt political commentary? Before my head exploded I had to focus on something else. The four kindergartners in the first row not singing and picking their noses was more than enough entertainment for me.
I guess in the end I should just be happy that I didn’t spontaneously combust while walking into the church.
How was your Christmas and New Years Eve?