I used to spend a lot of time in church. My former school ran two chapels per week on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Plus I rarely missed a Sunday service. The speakers were quite eclectic. For instance, we had a bible teacher who didn’t actually believe in the resurrection of Jesus. He was also into the whole LGBT movement and wanted everyone—girls, boys, men, and women—to shit in the same toilet for the purpose of gender equality. Unfortunately, he wasn’t much of an orator, and the kids often slept through his sermons.
But we also had radicals on the other end of the spectrum. One of my former pastors, for example, was convinced that homosexuals and adulterers should still be executed just like it says in Leviticus. He thought that their deaths would make the world a better place.
He said, “Buffalo, take a look at our country. Half the kids are born without dads. We’re being overrun by fags, bastards, and dirty capitalists. Who needs it?”
I’m certainly no radical, and I don’t want to see anybody killed for sexual misbehavior. That would make me a hypocrite. I jerk off all the time. And, by his logic, my hands should immediately be amputated for sins against God. However, I must give credit where credit is due. He was a gifted speaker. I never snoozed during his sermons. Furthermore, I liked his sense of humor.
Ken the Chicken Man lived with us at the time. He found the pastor’s words a little bit strange. “I can’t believe that guy went to Harvard.”
I said, “How do you mean? He seems very intelligent to me.”
“Dad, he believes that homosexuals should be murdered. You don’t think that’s a little bit odd?”
I shrugged my shoulders. “Sure. It’s a tad idiosyncratic, but we all have our quirks. And I like his jokes.”
“Quirks? The guy is living in the stone age.”
I eventually left that place and found a less conservative church next to the beach. It was populated with young people who liked to play guitar, sing hymns, and beat on the bongos. Most of the members believed that sodomy and abortion were good things. Plus they didn’t have a lot of respect for the bible. In truth, they reminded me more of Wiccans than Christians.
I left that place after a year. My departure was no big deal. Nobody missed me, and I didn’t miss them. In fact, a few of those Jesus freaks worked in my school. We’d politely say hello in the corridors and then get back to our business.
After that, I found another house of worship more to my liking. It was located on a college campus, and the congregation was comprised of many hot female university students. I’ve got a thing for Asian women, so I never missed a Sunday. I called my new spiritual home the Church of Tits and Ass.
This place was quite conservative. For instance, I still remember a sermon by one of the deacons. He told everybody in the audience that homosexuals were going straight to hell. His message wasn’t exactly subtle. But what the fuck? At least he didn’t want to kill them. Good for him.
I bring this up because I had a brief conversation with a pastor yesterday evening while walking home from work.
I said, “Do you think you need to attend church to make it to heaven?”
He shook his head. “I wouldn’t think so. But it’s a question about how you want to run the race. For instance, is it OK just to get your toe over the finish line, or would you rather be viewed as a serious champion in God’s eyes?”
“Well, I’ve got to be honest. I haven’t been to church in months, and I can’t say that I really miss it.”
“Don’t expect me to condone your behavior. Church is important. A sense of community makes us all better Christians.”
“Maybe I’ll just start a bible study.”
“That might work. You don’t need four walls and a roof to be a church.”
But I was only saying that to blow smoke up his ass. I have no intention of starting a bible study. It’s simply too much work.