Monday, November 24, 2008

Youth Gathering: Stay away!


The LCMS National Youth Gathering is coming to our beloved Crescent City in 2010.

Sigh.

Yes, these are the "official" youth events that have featured throwing of toilet paper rolls during the distribution of Holy Communion and "rap" versions of the ordinaries of the Mass. These events have been, and remain, so scandalous to confessional Lutherans, that the Higher Things youth gatherings - which feature such radical elements as dignified worship and the exclusive use of LCMS hymnals and liturgies - are growing by leaps and bounds. Imagine that!

Normally, I'm all for tourist groups coming to NOLA, but I have to admit, I wish these folks would find another place to have their wing-ding. Haven't we suffered enough?

There is an interesting website dedicated to the New Orleans youth gathering. Can you believe how condescending it is? Take a poke around. The frequently asked questions would lead you to believe that the kids are being sent to a malaria-ridden red light district of a 3rd world nation where cannibalism is rampant (I'll have you know, like the British Navy, we now have the latter relatively under control).

There is even an "ask a native" section. Yep, ask a real-live New Orleans "native." Goodness, do they think we run around in loincloths? I know there are a few folks who do just that in the Quarter, but they're typically drunken tourists (which I suppose means there will be something for LCMS parents to do while their kids are throwing toilet paper during the Divine Service...).

Now, you Father Hollywood readers know how much I love my city and region. So, let's just keep all the positives about NOLA between us, okay?

Here is how I would answer the concerns of parents, youth leaders, commissioned ministers and ministresses, guitar-twangling emergent-wannabe pastors, and others considering invading, I mean, visiting the Big Easy for the Youth Gathering:

New Orleans is a cesspool. You should really think about going someplace safe by comparison: like Gary, Detroit, or Kabul. We have them all beat in violent crime. In fact, the murder rate is approaching 50%. You have as great a chance of being murdered in New Orleans as you do of flipping a "heads" on a coin. Think about that!

Also, keep in mind, New Orleans is utterly amoral. Every street corner has a drug dealer on it - openly selling crack and heroin. In fact, our pushers are not only violent and disease ridden, they are all naked lesbian voodoo priestesses who play the lottery and listen to heavy metal music.

You also have to watch out for the crazy Cajuns who cruise around the bayous of the Central Business District in piroughs and jeeps looking for dead animals to scrape off the road to make jambalaya (what do you think you're eating in those restaurants anyway?), picking off national guard troops (didn't you realize that Southern Comfort was a documentary?) in between playing loud zydeco music and refusing to speak English. In fact, if you can't speak French, don't bother coming. According to the Napoleanic Code, English is forbidden, and you are guilty of all crimes until proven innocent. That's why we have "parishes" instead of "counties." Don't say you haven't been warned, mon ami!

Also, the ubiquitous fleur-de-lis is just a stylized middle finger - totally inappropriate for Lutheran youth. And keep in mind we are swarming with Roman Catholics just waiting to pounce on your sons and daughters not only to make them pray to the Saints every Sunday, but to cheer for them at the Superdome as well. Just hold that thought, Viking fans and Garrison Keillor listeners whose Bibles only contain 66 books.

And racial problems? Oh boy. We still have not abolished slavery. Every white person in New Orleans is a member of the Klan, and every black person is a Panther. We have open riots and race wars on the streets on a daily basis just for fun. That's why we had a Chinese sheriff in Jefferson Parish - so he could be the referee for all the black and white gang warfare. Do you really want your innocent kids from the midwest exposed to that?

And I haven't even gotten to the French Quarter yet - where the garbage is piled ten feet high, where heterosexuals are beaten (with the heels of Manolo Blahnik shoes) by transvestite hookers into thin patties and served with french fries and remoulade sauce to clueless tourists walking up and down Bourbon Street with "hand grenades." Christians are openly tossed to the lions at Audubon Zoo. In fact, the naked lesbian voodoo priestesses (you haven't forgotten them, have you?) have lobbied the Nagin administration to outlaw Christian churches within Orleans Parish. And you don't even want to know what goes on in Jefferson Parish! Are you Iowans up for that kind of thing?

It's also hot. That's because we're so close to hell. You have to drive north across the world's longest bridge to get to South Mississippi. It's 150 degrees in the winter. Al Gore is convinced that he invented global warming on Tchoupitoulas Street. If you live in Minnesota or Wisconsin, you will literally fry to death in your own skin - which is really good for the local cannibal restaurants, but bad for tourism. But like I said, we're getting that cannibalism issue somewhat under control.

We also have local mayors who drive drunk and crash into tollbooths. We have cops who commit armed robbery and steal thousands of dollars out of the evidence room. Our Republicans keep the brothels in business and our Democrats keep their bribes in the freezer. We had one governor assassinated on the floor of the State Capitol that he built, and another one currently incarcerated in the federal penitentiary (and none of this paragraph is exaggerated). So, you think your politicians in Indianapolis and Harrisburg are corrupt? Ha!

We also have billions of rabid feral cats and strange drunken wild musicians covered in washboards and tattoos. Some live in "shotgun" houses, because we typically shoot first and ask questions later. We still practice dueling, and we hang Yankees from the flag pole in front of the courthouse. There are some places where Republicans still can't get on the ballot. Now there's a reason for your typical LCMS family to keep their kids away! Can I get an "Amen"?

We eat dead leggy crawfish that peer up at you from the plate by pinching their tails and sucking their heads. We put Tabasco on everything. We don't hate the French like every Northern Republican LCMS Rush Limbaugh listener. We upset Lutheran school teachers by saying "Who dat?" and asking "What time it is?" We also never "ask" a question, but rather always "ax." Subject and verb agreement is at best only a suggestion. At any given time, you will see a grown man in a pirate suit or someone walking around town with a live chicken under his arm for no particular reason - and nobody will bat an eye. You may even see a Lutheran pastor walking to work in a cassock. We often bury our dead above ground. We have numerous casinos, drive through daiquiri shops, and liquor sold in grocery stores seven days a week. The clerks at the Circle K smoke while they are at work. We have bars and restaurants that sell absynthe.

We have wild Mardi Gras parades in which children are placed precariously in boxes atop ladders along parade routes so as to give them a closer view, and (worse yet!), they are not in federally-approved child seats with proper safety equipment. Shocking!

Also, the state bird is the mosquito - which carries malaria and is about 30 inches in length. Alligators live in our canals, as do nutria - which are rats the size of labrador retrievers. You think your Chinese restaurants might be serving cats? Meh. You don't want to know what our Chinese and Vietnamese chefs are putting on your kids' plates. We also have cockroaches the size of chihuahuas. They are known to eat Lutheran children in a single bite.

And, as a bonus, the youth gathering is held during hurricane season (what genuius came up with that?)! And don't you know, most of the city is still flooded from Katrina, with the result that most New Orleanians have to wear scuba equipment and swim to work in shark-infested waters? So if you send your kids here, there's a really good chance they will be stranded in the Superdome with no power for weeks on end while looters run amok toting cases of Heineken and shooting at rescue helicopters.

So, maybe it would be best for the LCMS Youth Gathering Committee to reconsider. Cleveland is a really nice place. So is Equatorial Guinea. My vote: someplace far away from New Orleans. We have standards to maintain here. We're trying to keep the riffraff out!

6 comments:

Dan @ Necessary Roughness said...

You have as great a chance of being murdered in New Orleans as you do of flipping a "heads" on a coin. Think about that!

Also, keep in mind, New Orleans is utterly amoral. Every street corner has a drug dealer on it - openly selling crack and heroin. In fact, our pushers are not only violent and disease ridden, they are all naked lesbian voodoo priestesses who play the lottery and listen to heavy metal music.

You also have to watch out for the crazy Cajuns who cruise around the bayous of the Central Business District in piroughs and jeeps looking for dead animals to scrape off the road to make jambalaya (what do you think you're eating in those restaurants anyway?),


Dude, I was all set to go until the roadkill jambalaya. At least when I taught in Lafayette we had the good stuff! :)

William Gleason said...

Rare form, Fr. Beane. This has got to be one of your funniest. My wife axed me about the TP at the distribution, but I have no idea what it was all about. Can you fill us in...or do we not want to know?

Lutheran Lucciola said...

"In fact, our pushers are not only violent and disease ridden, they are all naked lesbian voodoo priestesses who play the lottery and listen to heavy metal music."

Hey, I know her. Say hello for me, would ya?

Now you've gone and made me miss the good 'ol days. Dammit.

God's Guitar Girl said...

This is the funniest thing I've read in a loooong time!!!

And I thought that love bugs were the state bird -- silly me...

Frank Gillespie said...

my kids are going to San Antonio this year for our youth gathering.

Greg said...

Excellent, Pere Hollywood, excellent. You made me both homesick and glad I won't be there for the onslaught.