Did you bring the Fanta? An entire vending machine? Man, you’re good. Good luck finding an outlet for it, though.
Anyway, I don’t know whose idea it was to spend the entire night inside a cinder block orphanage—it must be 110 degrees in here. And there are dirty little orphans everywhere. Plus—and I don’t mean to sound racist—but they’re all black and don’t speak a lick of English!
Also, it smells like a floating garbage dump around here! What, Cité Soleil actually is a floating garbage dump? Well, I’ll be.
Still, we have a perfectly good charter cruise ship docked just down the way in Port International de Port-au-Prince. And here I have to spend an entire night fighting off giant millipedes and Haitian street gangs, when I could be working on my shuffleboard game with the curvy members of the Cubic Zirconia Cathedral Ministries Bikini Mission Team.
I’d much rather be holding an O’Doul’s in my hand, shooting around a couple of biscuits with my tang, if you know what I mean.
If it were just me, I wouldn’t mind roughing it one night. But we’ve got the ladies to think about. And Tina Marina has Dallas Cowboys cheerleader tryouts in a few days. You try dealing with her tomorrow morning when she realizes there isn’t an outlet for her hairdryer!
I know, I know, gosh darn it, this is mission work! We’re here on a mission from the Lord God Almighty to hand out 24K gold leaf endpaper, olive wood cover Creole Bibles. Say, did I mention the olive wood comes straight from Gethsemane?
You know, they say the illiteracy rate in this slum is something around 90%. In fact, I bet we make more from a Cubic Zirconia Cathedral Fourth Offering than all 400,000 residents of this dump earn in a whole year.
Say, can you believe that Brother Bear yahoo from Glory Holy Ministries had the gall to call me up the other day and suggest that there were better ways to help these pagans from their squalor than by handing out $1,350 Bibles? Just imagine the economic development impact these gifts will have on the community. Why, most of these tin shacks didn’t even cost as much as the leather clam shell boxes we had designed for the Bibles!
Of course, Brother Bear didn’t even call them pagans! He suggested that most of them were Catholic and that made them Christian in the eyes of Jesus. Dang, now there’s an unforgiveable blasphemy against the Holy Spirit if I ever heard one!
That Glory Holer pastor even said the reason his church does missions trips is to better inform the members of his parish about life in other cultures. Like our bikini girls don’t know their way around Hispaniola historiography!
Oh, hey, Lisa Ann. No, for the third time, this isn’t Kenya. It’s the Caribbean. Better go tuck yourself in; big day tomorrow! Don’t forget to brush!
Anyway, I’m getting hungry. What’s to eat around here? Nothing, what do you mean nothing? Maybe you can go hawk a few Bibles for a couple of Double Whoppers—so long as they’re not those new gay whoppers.
Besides, what do all those dusty little noisemakers eat? Something must be making them bloat up like that? You mean hunger really does that to children?
C’mon, there’s got to be a McDonald’s or a Popeyes in the neighborhood. Well, yeah, I saw that street vendor, but I couldn’t tell the rotted meat from the unripe plantains for all the flies.
Forget about it. I’ll just drink a warm Fanta and call it an early night. Tomorrow, we’ll wake up the ladies, throw all the Bibles in a big pile outside the orphanage gate and catch a tap-tap back to the cruise ship.
Then it’s Club Med Haiti, here we come! (Why do you think I sent Mrs. Pillow to that Tea Party NRA, anti-Obamacare Conference in Omaha?)
Now, let me tell you about this great idea I’ve got for a baccarat baptism poolside party…
Please, turn in your hymnals to No. 412.
A little ole’ man was sittin’ on a step
And a tear trickled own his cheek.
I said “What’s the matter?”
He said “A train just ran over me.”
I said “Hmm. How often does this happen?”
He said “Everyday about this time.”
5. Minister Sets Himself on Fire to Protest Social Injustice, over at United Methodist News: “Retired Pastor Saw ‘Destiny’ in Self-Immolation”
On June 23, 2014, the Reverend Charles R. Moore of Allen, Texas, a retired minister of the United Methodist Church, fatally set himself on fire—the formal term is self-immolation—in response to past and current acts of racism and social injustice in Grand Saline, Texas, as well as nationally.
In the suicide note Reverend Moore left behind, which he entitled “O Grand Saline, Repent of Your Racism,” he wrote:
I will son [sic] be eighty years old, and my heart is broken over this. America (and Grand Saline prominently) have never really repented for the atrocities of slavery and its aftermath. What my hometown needs to do is open its heart and its doors to black people as a sign of the rejection of past sins. … Many African Americans were lynched around here, probably some in Grand Saline: hanged, decapitated and burned, some while still alive. The vision of them haunts me greatly.
I am not going to question the Reverend Moore’s sanity. There is a considerable history of protest by self-immolation—particularly in Islamic and Asian culture. A very famous—and recent—example is the self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi in Tunisia in 2011, which many cite as a main prompting of the Arab Spring.
Something is happening in the United States. The hate and furor is palpable. Dialogue, and actions, appear to be turning increasingly violent. The wheels seem to be coming off. People are acting in selfish and selfless desperation.
Even sadder: the Reverend Moore’s tragic, messenger death—of death by fiery self-sacrifice—so far as I can tell, never even made national news.
He couldn’t take the memory or the reality of the hate any more—and which often he found being committed in the name of the God he worshiped.
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