Dr. Robert Munday of the Episcopal Church’s Nashotah House seminary reports that the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh will be profaning a sacred rite of worship at a diocesan gathering next Friday. The clever Dicks of the diocese, ever on the lookout for a way to turn the worship of God into a celebration of popular culture, have come up with this:
With brains in your head and feet in your shoes
Please come to Calvary from any direction you choose.
Friday, October 22 will be the day.
Fun is waiting, so get on your way.
We’ll have a light supper and share together
A little Seuss fun, no matter the weather.
A movie, and popcorn, and stories, too.
We’ll finish with a Seusscharist designed just for you.
Five thirty is the time that we will start.
We know you will join us, if you are smart.
Weezie is the one that you should call
She’ll take reservations for family, friends and all.
Age is no limit, bottom or top.
We know that our gathering won’t be a flop.
Have any questions you’d like to ask?
Just call Adele. She’s up to the task.
Dr. Munday, being a person of learning and sense as well as Christian faith, objects:
Now, before someone calls me a GRINCH for casting aspersions on this program, let me be clear about my reasoning. The Eucharist is to proclaim the Lord Jesus Christ’s death, whenever we eat the bread and drink the cup, until He comes again. That is its message, and that is the meaning. It needs no other metaphor. Dressing it up in other garb can only obscure—not enhance—its message and its meaning.
He’s exactly right, of course. Now, some might say, “but Christians have been taking stuff from popular culture (drinking songs turned into hymn tunes, Druid trees turned into Christmas trees, etc.) for centuries. What’s the big deal?” The big deal is that Holy Communion is no peripheral or adiaphoristic element of worship, something that can be changed, adapted, or discarded as need warrants. Unlike a hymn tune, which has no intrinsic meaning until it is yoked to a specific text, Communion, being instituted by Christ, has an intrinsic meaning and purpose. As Dr. Munday says, it is to proclaim the death and resurrection of Christ, as well as to be a means of grace. Trivializing it through the use of pseudo-Seussian doggeral, as I imagine will be done (maybe the officiant will dress up like Mike Myers in The Cat in the Hat) neither worships nor honors God, but laughs at Him. To which all I can say is: Galatians 6:7.
(Via Stand Firm.)