PARISH REPORT: Area Man Denied Communion for Public Fashion Sins

(AoftheANews) – NEW YORK – Area resident Eddy Bower told AoftheA News that he was humiliated at the 10:00 AM Mass this past Sunday for “committing the very public fashion sin of wearing plaid shorts, dark socks, and sandals” while presenting himself for Holy Communion.

“I’ve never been so embarrassed,” he said. “And that includes the time I was singled out for wearing cargo shorts, white socks and wing tip shoes to my sister’s wedding two years ago.”

Bower claims that when he held out his hands to receive the Host, the priest distributing Holy Communion solemnly covered the ciborium with his hand, and shook his head with stern disapproval.

“I asked Father, what’s wrong? Why won’t you give me Holy Communion? He leaned forward and hissed, ‘You are not in a state of grace. Just look at what you’re wearing! You’re committing the very public fashion sin of wearing plaid shorts, dark socks, and sandals! In the Lord’s holy house, no less!’ I was shocked.”

Bower is considering writing the bishop. “My rights as a Catholic have been violated. I’ve seen guys wearing white slacks after Labor Day getting Holy Communion, and women wearing last season’s fashion lines too, so don’t tell me what I wore was out of line. This is so wrong.”

Calls to the parish where the alleged refusal occurred have not been returned.

Photo credit: Tobyotter via Visualhunt.com / CC BY

Posted in AoftheA News Desk, Humor, News That Could Be True, Parish Report, Satire | 1 Comment

PARISH REPORT: 2nd Vigil Mass Added as “Brisket & Beer Hour” Doubles Attendance

(AoftheANews) – BOERNE, TX – St Lawrence of Rome, located in downtown Boerne, became the first parish in North America to offer two Saturday vigil Masses, in order to accommodate a tremendous increase in attendance after introducing ‘Brisket & Beer Hour’ following the Mass.

“We began the ‘Brisket & Beer Hour’ a month ago, after the 4:30 PM Mass,” Fr Weber, pastor of St Lawrence, told AoftheA News. “Within a couple weeks, attendance had doubled, and it was standing room only. I added a 6:30 PM Mass last Saturday, and 350 people showed up.”

The idea to serve brisket and beer after Mass originated with Director of Hospitality Charles Broyle.

“I wanted to do something different for the vigil Mass,” he said. “We’ve been serving coffee and donuts after the 10 AM Sunday Mass for years, just like every other parish do. I asked myself, what can we do different, to draw people to our parish? To be all friendly like. Then it struck me. Who in Texas doesn’t like brisket and beer? Practically nobody.”

A parishioner volunteers the use of his smoker, while other parishioners donate the brisket and several kegs of beer weekly. Freewill donations go towards the purchase of coleslaw, Dr. Pepper for the non-drinkers, paper products, and smoking woods such as mesquite and hickory.

“We fire up that bad boy at 9 AM,” Broyle explained, “and by the time the 4:30 Mass ends, we’re serving the best brisket west of the Pecos. The smoke rings be so beautiful, they make a grown man weep with joy.”

Fr Weber explained that there’s a one beer maximum for the adults. “I’d rather my flock be drunk on the Holy Spirit, than on a Shiner Bock or Bud.”

When asked what is done with any leftover brisket, Broyle slapped his knee and laughed. “Leftovers? This is Texas, son. There ain’t ever no leftover brisket in Texas!”

Photo credit: thermionics via Visualhunt.com / CC BY

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Suicide and the Torment of Numbness

I am numb, through and through, and it is tortuous. A piece of my heart has been torn away, so I ought to be reeling in pain, but the shock runs too deep. I sense a hole in my chest, but incredulity overwhelms any other feeling.

Roughly 24 hours ago, on Monday afternoon, I received word that my 19-year old nephew committed suicide. Technically he isn’t my nephew – he’s my wife’s cousin’s son, but he used to call me Uncle Larry. Our families are close that way – holidays, birthdays, get togethers. He and his twin sister were born three days after my younger son. Our kids grew up with their kids. I played D&D with him.

Details are scant, and frankly speaking, I don’t think more information would make things better. The simple truth is, he was alive on Sunday, and he took his life on Monday.

This is uncharted territory for me. And I am just numb. Tinged with grief, infused with unfelt pain, but numb nonetheless. It is torment.

Long-time readers of AoftheA know that I rarely, if ever, write of personal matters. I may write just one post about this, I have no idea. I am too numb to effectively write. I know what I want to say, but words aren’t forming. I’m aware of my surroundings, but can barely perceive. It feels as if I’ve been shoved off a cliff, but I’m not falling. Instead, I’m slowly descending through some viscous, gelatinous, invisible matter that darkens light and deadens sound.

And I know that what his family is experiencing is exponentially worse and more horrifying. I claim no comparison. I dare not attempt to imagine – I don’t believe I can imagine, this numbness notwithstanding. The pain his parents and sister are enduring…there are no words.

The Church teaches that no one can be certain suicides are condemned to Hell. Those left behind, though, are condemned to a lifelong limbo of never completely understanding, of having unanswered questions, of overshadowing doubts, and of unlived memories. It’s a cruel fate. It’s a universal condition due to being residents of this vale of tears. It’s one thing if a person dies in a bizarre accident, or after battling a disease. But suicide is unnatural, leaving in its wake an unnatural numbness. Suicide doesn’t just end one life – it ends the possibility of what’s hoped for. It abruptly changes the trajectory of everyone involved, sending family and friends into unknown spaces and unfamiliar country.

A friend of mine and I speak frequently about how we’re living in The Land of Suck. Every once in awhile, it seems that we’re on the verge of emigrating, of getting out. But it’s just an illusion. Just when you think you’re about to cross the border, you blink and find yourself back at the intersection of State and Main, smack dab in the center of town, in the capital of the Land of Suck. And then you realize – Christ hasn’t returned yet to liberate us. And the suck is different for everyone.

I’ll feel differently in a few days, perhaps fewer. It’s in my nature to fight, talk, cry, and process through circumstances that Life slams into my face. I don’t cram emotions into a ball, bury them deep into my gut, and ignore them. That’s not who I am. So don’t worry about me – I’ll be fine, God willing. I’m too numb at the moment to affirm “God is here, in this moment!”, but my faith is preserving me nonetheless. It’s my faith that’s keeping me from falling like a boulder off that cliff. It’s my faith that will lead me to my parish’s Adoration chapel tonight to pray and be comforted.

Please, though, in your kindness, pray for the repose of the soul of my nephew. His suicide may have happened at a particular and specific moment in time, but I believe that God, who exists outside of time, takes the prayers of His people, and applies them according to His desire. And please pray for his family, and for all those who loved him and will forever miss him. Whatever good God ultimately brings out of this tragedy, it starts with the earnest prayers of those who believe and hope in the life to come, of those who stand with others in their moments of numbness and pain.

Photo credit: x1klima via VisualHunt.com / CC BY-ND

Posted in Faith, Life As We Know It, Prayer, Suicide, Thoughts | 7 Comments

Anglicans Introduce New Lace Vestments for Casual Low Mass

(AoftheANews)– Canterbury – Church of England officials told AoftheA News this morning that they will be introducing a “casual Low Mass” in select churches this summer, in an effort to bring millennials and the younger generation back to the Churches.

“We’ve already chosen acolyte and sacristan vestments for the Casual LM™,” one official said. “We’re totes excited about the roll-out, which takes the formality of worship and mixes it with the impulse of hip, bold fashion statements. It combines sanctity and spontaneity, and makes what we like to call sanctineity!”

Models displayed the new vestments, sans shirts, for the scheduled press conference.

“We’re still working on the final designs for tank top chasubles and short sleeve, bare midriff surplices,” the official explained. “We want our servers and priests to appear holy, yet approachable. We want their vestments to say ‘Hey, just because I’m on the altar preaching to you about following your conscience, doesn’t mean I’m not a fun, with it person!'”

Another official told AoftheA News that the Casual LM™ was the result of a year long synod on ways to increase attendance. “We’ve tried watering down the preaching, making Jesus more accessible, and playing catchy Christian music during service. It finally dawned on us that youth were staying away because we weren’t woke on the hottest fashion trends. We’re super confident this is going to work miracles.”

Image via Sparkiebabyofficial

Posted in Satire | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments