Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sunday Funday

     Well? Just because we’re supposed to keep it holy doesn’t mean it can’t be enjoyable too, does it? God has nothing against fun!


     1. A Cautionary Tale.

     Old Madge had just passed away after eighty years, sixty of those years married to Herb...and not many of those pleasant ones. But there she stood at the Pearly Gates, with Saint Peter smiling broadly as he strode forward to greet her.

     “Welcome, Madge!” Saint Peter cried. “Yes, you are qualified to enter the Heavenly City. But we have a little admissions test we ask all new arrivals to pass. Are you ready?”

     Madge was somewhat nonplussed, but she squared her shoulders and said, “Yes, I’m ready. What’s the test?”

     “It’s a spelling quiz. Just one word,” Saint Peter said. “Can you spell ‘love?’”

     “Why, certainly!” Madge replied. “L–O–V–E.”

     “Excellent!” cried the saint. “And now, a personal request. I’m overdue for my annual vacation. Would you mind spending a few days here at the gates, greeting people just as I’ve greeted you?”

     “Not a problem, Saint Peter,” Madge said. “Go and enjoy yourself.” Which the saint did, leaving Madge there at the gates with her new responsibilities.

     Over the week that came, Madge greeted many fresh souls, and administered to them the same little spelling quiz she had faced. But on the last day of her duties, with Saint Peter’s return less than an hour away, whom should she see approaching but...her husband Herb!

     Herb approached her warily, for his experience of their marriage had been no more pleasant than hers. “Hello, sweetie,” he said. “What are you doing here?”

     “Oh, Saint Peter took a few days off, that’s all,” she said. “In fact, he’ll be back any minute now, but until he returns, I’m the gatekeeper. There’s a little test to get into heaven. Don’t worry, it’s a spelling quiz, but it’s just one word. Are you ready?”

     Herb shrugged and said “Sure, what’s the word?”

     Madge smiled and said, “Schenectady.”


     2. The Nervous Young Priest.

     The following was sent to me by a friend in Virginia:

     A new priest at his first mass was so nervous he could hardly speak. After mass he asked the monsignor how he had done.

     The monsignor replied, "When I am worried about getting nervous on the pulpit, I put a glass of vodka next to the water glass. if I start to get nervous, I take a sip."

     So on the following Sunday he took the monsignor's advice. At the beginning of the sermon, he got nervous and took a drink. He proceeded to talk up a storm.

     Upon his return to his office after mass, he found the following note on the door:

  1. Sip the Vodka, don't gulp.
  2. There are 10 commandments, not 12.
  3. There are 12 apostles, not 10.
  4. Jesus was consecrated, not constipated.
  5. Jacob wagered his donkey, he did not bet his ass.
  6. We do not refer to Jesus Christ as the late J. C.
  7. The Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are not referred to as Daddy, Junior and the Spook.
  8. David slew Goliath, he did not kick the shit out of him.
  9. David was hit by a rock and was knocked off his donkey, he was not stoned off his ass.
  10. We do not refer to the cross as the "Big T."
  11. When Jesus broke the bread at the Last Supper he said, "Take this and eat it for it is my body." He did not say "Eat me"
  12. The Blessed Virgin is not called "Mary with the Cherry,"
  13. The recommended grace before a meal is not: Rub-A-Dub-Dub thanks for the grub, yeah God.
  14. Next Sunday there will be a taffy pulling contest at St. Peter's, not a Peter pulling contest at St. Taffy's.


     3. Bloopers From Church Bulletin Boards.

     These gems actually appeared on church bulletin boards in England and the United States:

  1. Due to the Rector’s illness, Wednesday’s healing services will be discontinued until further notice.
  2. Bertha Belch, a missionary from Africa, will be speaking tonight at Calvary Methodist. Come hear Bertha Belch all the way from Africa.
  3. The Rev. Merriwether spoke briefly, much to the delight of the audience.
  4. On a church bulletin during the minister’s illness: GOD IS GOOD; Dr. Hargreaves is better.
  5. Applications are now being accepted for 2 year-old nursery workers.
  6. The pastor will preach his farewell message, after which the choir will sing, “Break Forth Into Joy.”
  7. If you would like to make a donation, fill out a form, enclose a check, and drip in the collection basket.
  8. Next Sunday Mrs. Vinson will be soloist for the morning service. The pastor will then speak on “It’s a Terrible Experience.”
  9. Don’t miss this Saturday’s exhibit by Christian Martian Arts.
  10. We are grateful for the help of those who cleaned up the grounds around the church building and the rector.
  11. A worm welcome to all who have come today.
  12. Barbara remains in the hospital and needs blood donors for more transfusions. She is also having trouble sleeping and requests tapes of Pastor Nelson’s sermons.
  13. During the absence of our pastor, we enjoyed the rare privilege of hearing a good sermon when J.F. Stubbs supplied our pulpit.
  14. Irving Benson and Jessie Carter were married on October 24 in the church. So ends a friendship that began in their school days.
  15. The ushers will come forward and take our ties and offerings.
  16. The rosebud on the altar this morning is to announce the birth of David Alan Belzer, the sin of Reverend and Mrs. Julius Belzer.
  17. The eighth-graders will be presenting Shakespeare’s Hamlet in the church basement on Friday at 7 p.m. The congregation is invited to attend this tragedy.
  18. Don’t let worry kill you off; let the church help.
  19. Please place your donation in the envelope along with the deceased person(s) you want remembered.
  20. Let us join David and Lisa in the celebration of their wedding and bring their happiness to a conclusion.
  21. Helpers are needed! Please sign up on the information sheep.
  22. Diana and Don request your presents at their wedding.
  23. The concert held in Fellowship Hall was a great success. Special thanks are due to the minister’s daughter, who labored the whole evening at the piano, which as usual fell upon her.
  24. The outreach committee has enlisted 25 visitors to make calls on people who are not afflicted with any church.
  25. Low Self-Esteem Support Group will meet Thursday at 7 to 8:30p.m. Please use the back door.
  26. The 1991 Spring Council Retreat will be hell May 10 and 11.
  27. The audience is asked to remain seated until the end of the recession.
  28. Remember in prayer the many who are sick of our church and community.
  29. 22 members were present at the church meeting held at the home of Mrs. Marsha Crutchfield last evening. Mrs. Crutchfield and Mrs. Rankin sang a duet, The Lord Knows Why.
  30. The choir invites any member of the congregation who enjoys sinning to join the choir.
  31. At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be “What is Hell?”. Come early and listen to our choir practice.
  32. The third verse of Blessed Assurance will be sung without musical accomplishment.
  33. The music for today’s service was all composed by George Friedrich Handel in celebration of the 300th anniversary of his birth.
  34. A song fest was hell at the Methodist church Wednesday.
  35. Today’s Sermon: How Much Can a Man Drink? with hymns from a full choir.
  36. Hymn: “I Love Thee My Ford.”
  37. Miss Charlene Mason sang “I will not pass this way again” giving obvious pleasure to the congregation.
  38. Women’s Luncheon: Each member bring a sandwich. Polly Phillips will give the medication.
  39. Announcement in the church bulletin for a National PRAYER & FASTING conference: “The cost for attending the Fasting and Prayer conference includes meals.”
  40. The church will host an evening of fine dining, superb entertainment, and gracious hostility.
  41. Ushers will eat latecomers.
  42. Tuesday at 4PM there will be an ice cream social. All ladies giving milk will please come early.
  43. Weight Watchers will meet at 7 p.m. Please use large double door at the side entrance.
  44. Potluck supper: prayer and medication to follow.


     4. But Seriously, Folks...

     This coming Thursday is the Feast of the Ascension, just before which Christ gave His Apostles the Great Commission:

     Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.
     And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen. [Matthew 28:16-20]

     Though it’s prominent in the liturgical calendar, it’s not as widely nor as vividly celebrated as the other feasts. I’ve never understood why. The Son of God had risen from the dead and charged those who had followed him to teach others as He had done, in His name. Surely no greater responsibility has ever been conferred upon mortal men...and just as surely, it was as much an honor as a responsibility.

     The Great Commission has passed down from the Apostles through the generations – and not just upon ordained clerics. Every Christian has a part in it, for each of us known to be of the faith is taken by others to be an example of Christian conduct, most especially in our adherence to Christ’s “new commandment:”

     Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you. A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
     By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. [John 13:33-35]

     This is not just a repetition of the Second Great Commandment, but an unmistakable intensification: for Christ so greatly loved Man that He gave His mortal life for us, for the remission of our sins, and that His Resurrection might stand as evidence of His divine authority.

     I hope you’ve had a joyous Easter season. May God bless and keep you all.

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