I admit that since there are only three people here, none of whom I personally know (although one bears a passing resemblance to a young Lou Dobbs), it had crossed my mind to send you all home early. But then I would not be able to set the record straight.
Let me begin by saying that any similarities between my adventures in Manila and the travails of the valiant Senator Craig (Rrrrr!-Idaho) are purely the result of the fact that even God-fearing men occasionally are tested by the Almighty, especially in small enclosed spaces close to other men. But the idea that I was making fun of Senator Craig’s ordeal is, simply put, depraved.
The other scurrilous rumor that I need to put to rest is that I have been offered the position of Archbishop of Bulawayo in Zimbabwe, after the resignation of Pius Ncube. Archbishop Ncube resigned “after photographs and video purporting to be of him and his secretary together in his bedroom surfaced in the media” according to the left-wing news organization the BBC.
Although Bob Mugabe and I have known each other since studying at Driefontein outside Johannesburg, a time when we both could recite all the lyrics to “Auf Wiederseh’n, Sweetheart” by Vera Lynn, that doesn’t mean I would be his choice to replace Pius Ncube! Au contraire! To tell the truth, Bob hates my guts.
What came between us was Vera Lynn herself. You see, Bob brought her to the Seminary one morning, introducing her as Vera Welch, and she and I immediately hit it off. I offered her a homemade cigarette of the kind I was wont to make at that time in my life, and she enthusiastically accepted. Bob, of course, sat in the corner the entire time occasionally muttering about the Asiatic Mode of Production. Over the next few evenings, he grew almost insanely jealous and spirited her off to Ghana the following week. Vera Lynn eventually escaped, but I don’t think she ever forgave me for not trying to rescue her.
Bob, of course, has been plagued by the infidelities of his political opponents. It is tragic, but I suspect no one was more upset about his having had to level charges against Canaan Banana than Bob. He always holds his opponents up on such a pedestal, and then when they sin, he is truly hurt. His hegemony is that of the lonely idealist who would love for a qualified opponent to take over from him, so that he might finally get some rest. But his opponents always prove too weak!
Today’s reading is from the song “Winter Wonderland” which Vera Lynn used to sing as I giggled by the fireplace.
In the meadow we can build a snowman,
then pretend that he is Parson Brown.
He'll say 'Are You Married?'
We'll say 'No man, but you can do the job when you're in town!’
This is exactly the sort of disrespect with which the clergy is treated today. Prescient in the 1930’s, today this song, despite its avante-garde lyrics and radically tonal harmonies, rings all too true! People regularly do build clergymen out of snow in order to avoid answering the hard questions that any responsible clergyman is wont to ask any couple about to be married, to wit:
- Would you ever be critical of a liar wearing a General’s uniform?
- Have you or anyone in your family ever had prurient thoughts in an Aviary?
- Did you know that in many countries, it is customary to give the clergyman either a case of Port or a week in your timeshare in Cancun?
But a snowman, what does a snowman ask? What, indeed, does a snowman desire? Eternal Winter! And if there is not to be Eternal Winter, then Eternal Hellfire so that everyone might know the pain of melting in the heat of the first warm day of spring!
That's depraved! As for me, I don’t plan to ever be in your town. So you can go on waiting for your elusive Parson Brown, you hedonistic sinners, as you dance Satan’s Rhumba with your megalomanical homicidal snowpeople and your despicable diseased birds! Pah!
Labels: Sunday Sermon