God and Hemorrhoids

This post isn’t about you might think it’s about.

Anyone who claims the Bible lacks humor ought to read 1 Sam 5-6.

The Philistines have just routed the Israelites, and adding insult to injury, they absconded with the Ark of the Covenant, and placed it in the temple dedicated to their god Dagon. Starting at 1 Sam 5:6

6 Now the LORD dealt severely with the people of Ashdod. He ravaged and afflicted the city and its vicinity with hemorrhoids; he brought upon the city a great and deadly plague of mice that swarmed in their ships and overran their fields. 7 On seeing how matters stood, the men of Ashdod decided, “The ark of the God of Israel must not remain with us, for he is handling us and our god Dagon severely.” 8 So they summoned all the Philistine lords and inquired of them, “What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel?” The men of Gath replied, “Let them move the ark of the God of Israel on to us.” 9 So they moved the ark of the God of Israel to Gath! But after it had been brought there, the LORD threw the city into utter turmoil: he afflicted its inhabitants, young and old, and hemorrhoids broke out on them. 10 The ark of God was next sent to Ekron; but as it entered that city, the people there cried out, “Why have they brought the ark of the God of Israel here to kill us and our kindred?” 11 Then they, too, sent a summons to all the Philistine lords and pleaded: “Send away the ark of the God of Israel. Let it return to its own place, that it may not kill us and our kindred.” A deadly panic had seized the whole city, since the hand of God had been very heavy upon it. 12 Those who escaped death were afflicted with hemorrhoids, and the outcry from the city went up to the heavens.

*snort* Of all the curses and plagues God could choose, He chose hemorrhoids. That’s funny.

Hang on – it gets better in chapter 6.

1The ark of the LORD had been in the land of the Philistines seven months 2when they summoned priests and fortune-tellers to ask, “What shall we do with the ark of the LORD? Tell us what we should send back with it.”

Seven MONTHS?!?! That’s a lotta itchin’, burnin’, twitchin’ and squirmin’. And with no Tucks wipes, either. Just saying.

But wait – there’s more!

3They replied: “If you intend to send away the ark of the God of Israel, you must not send it alone, but must, by all means, make amends to him through a guilt offering. Then you will be healed, and will learn why he continues to afflict you.”4When asked further, “What guilt offering should be our amends to him?”, they replied: “Five golden hemorrhoids and five golden mice to correspond to the number of Philistine lords, since the same plague has struck all of you and your lords.5Therefore, make images of the hemorrhoids and of the mice that are infesting your land and give them as a tribute to the God of Israel. Perhaps then he will cease to afflict you, your gods, and your land.

Okay, now God is totally messing with them. Five golden hemorrhoids? “Make images of the hemorrhoids”? How humiliating that must have been, right? ‘Um, excuse me, my lord, but would you please drop trou and bend over so we can make an impression of your hemorrhoid?’ Talk about getting one’s ass handed to him, huh?

I can imagine how it went down for the artisans. The Philistine priests went to them and said “Okay, we’ll be randomly selecting some of you to make five golden mice, and others to make five golden hemorrhoids.” They each muttered to themselves “Pickmeformice pickmeformice pickmeformice…”

End of the story – the Philistines return the Ark with their tribute to the Israelites, then hightail it back to their kingdom.

No one but God can make His enemies the butt of His jokes with such wit.

If you were looking for a theological discourse on the meaning and significance of hemorrhoids and why God chose that particular curse over any other…come on, this is AoftheA. I just thought it was a funny story.

Image in the Public Domain via Wikimedia

Posted in All The World's A Blog And We Are Merely Posters, Because It Made Me Laugh, Bible, Humor, Scripture | 2 Comments

PARISH REPORT: First Communion Canceled Due to Felt Material Shortage

(AoftheANews) – BURLINGTON – Shock and dismay rippled through Our Lady of Good Vibrations parish this past Sunday, as the First Communion Mass was canceled due to a lack of felt material, which prevented the communicants from making their sacramental banners.

“We are extremely disappointed,” Fr. Pace Tanglew told AoftheA News. “The kids have worked and studied so hard to prepare for this day – spiritually, emotionally, and of course, artistically. Naturally, they’re upset. The arts and crafts portion of First Communion is a huge deal for them, and for the community.”

Polly Esther Purl, the parish Director of Catechesis, apologized profusely for the mistake. “I can’t tell you how sorry I am – for the kids, for their parents, for the professional photographers. I really thought enough felt was available, and didn’t think to check. There were only a few scraps left in the crafts cupboard.”

Traditionally, the communicants-to-be arrive at the parish hall the day before the First Communion Mass to create their sacramental banners. It was then when Purl made the fateful discovery.

“Telling the kids they wouldn’t be able to make banners…the looks on their faces…the dejection, the betrayal. It will haunt me forever.”

Fr. Tanglew told AoftheA News the Mass will be rescheduled, once additional felt is purchased. “I’m confident we can get this done in two weeks. We may have to cancel the Catholic Services Appeal video announcement to do so, but the bishop will understand. It’s for the children, after all.”

Early reports indicate the Confirmation students had used the felt for their banners last month, and being teenagers, they failed to tell anyone they used it all.

Photo credit: media.digest via Visualhunt.com / CC BY

Posted in AoftheA News Desk, Humor, News That Could Be True, Parish Report, Satire | 2 Comments

Pope Francis Approves Miracle Attributed to Solanus Casey

Early this morning, Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints to promulgate several decrees, the first of which was a miracle attributed to the intercession of Venerable Servant of God Fr Solanus Casey. This decree will lead to his beatification, which will declare him Blessed Solanus Casey. This is fantastic news!

The Solanus Casey Center is located at St Bonaventure’s in downtown Detroit, and I have the opportunity to visit there quite often – mostly to take advantage of the Sacrament of Penance, which is offered hourly every weekday. Solanus is buried at the site, and visitors are encouraged to leave written prayers and intercessions atop his tomb. The Center is a true gem, and worthy pilgrimage site.

And now Solanus is going to be a Blessed! This is great news for the Church at large, and for the Archdiocese of Detroit, and for Michigan. Solanus Casey will be the state’s first Blessed (though he was born in Wisconsin). God willing a second miracle will soon be attributed to Solanus’ intercession, after which he will be canonized a saint.

I wrote a post several years ago about visiting the Center here, which includes more photos of the church and exhibit on Solanus’ life.

If you live in or near Michigan, I strongly encourage you to visit Solanus and the Center. It is a site of many blessings and graces, upon whose grounds a holy, devout man – a future saint – worked and prayed.

Top photo credit: landlessness via VisualHunt.com / CC BY
Other image property of LarryD – please do not use without permission

Posted in Catholic Stuff, Catholic Superheroes, Cool, Pope Francis, Saints | 1 Comment

LA Religious Ed Congress 2017 Liturgy Nabs 3 Tony Awards Nominations

(AoftheANews) – LOS ANGELES – There are always unexpected surprises when the Tony Award nominations are announced, but no one was more surprised than the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress liturgical worship team this year. Their 2017 production, titled “Embrace Trust”, nabbed three nominations this year, for “Best Choreography”, “Best Direction of a Musical”, and “Best Costume Design of a Musical”.

“We’re stunned, obviously, but at the same time, we are very very pleased with the nominations,” LA RECongress Liturgy & Worship Integration and Cultural Sensitivity director Lavender Sykes told AoftheA News. “We worked hard on this year’s closing liturgy production, and we’re grateful that our hard work has finally been noticed by the Tony Awards nomination committee.”

The opening act, nearly 16 minutes long, featured two tightly choreographed numbers that featured twirling dancers, banner-waving prancers, and several clapping bishops. A Tony Awards official told AoftheA News that the opening act was one of the strongest productions he’s ever seen, and said the active participation element was a huge plus.

“We wanted to open with something big and impressive that involved the audience” Sykes said. “Apparently, we nailed it.”

The LA Religious Ed Congress is a longshot to bring home any of the awards, but Sykes says that doesn’t matter.

“This is just the first step. We’re on the Tony’s radar now, and my entire team is inspired to make the 2018 production even more spectacular and sensational.”

Industry insiders said that Archbishop Gomez ought to have gotten a nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical, for his convincing portrayal of a prince of the Church being totally okay with such a travesty of a Holy Mass, but others said no, he really wasn’t acting.

The Tony Awards ceremony will be held at Radio City Music Hall on June 11.

Photo credit: justinbaeder via VisualHunt.com / CC BY

Posted in AoftheA News Desk, Catholic Stuff, Humor, L.A. Religious Education Congress, Liturgical Abuses So Bad They Make Your Head Melt, News That Could Be True, Satire | Comments Off on LA Religious Ed Congress 2017 Liturgy Nabs 3 Tony Awards Nominations