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We’ve just been watching a hilarious TV comedy, set in a bizzare, surreal world where grotesque characters convey insane, and slightly disturbing, stories: Sunday morning religious telly.
Today was a ‘New Christan’ programme. Gone are the the church, the robe-clad vicar, the flowery hats and the organ-based droning hymns. Instead the ‘service’ is held in a large amphetheatre-style venue by people wearing very sensible suits and expressions of forced jollity betrayed by an obvious history of depression or mental illness. Next to the orators are the funky band. Hey, these guys are rockers and artists, they don’t wear suits. They wear cool dress-down threads: cords and chunky jumpers.
In between the patronising sermon segments, the band start to ROCK. A woman in an 80’s-style power suit starts singing the fresh new worship songs, punctuating each syllable with the most girly air-punches you’ve ever seen. With the animal rhythm and inspiring words
“you were higher and lifted up,
you were higher and lifted up,
you were higher and lifted up,
sun of god” (repeat x 10)
The audience cannot contain themselves. The glory of god is truly shining upon them, as only God’s glory can shine. They throw their right arms in the air to act as glory-recptors. Left arms obviously don’t work as well. Not sure why, probably because God probably hates the left-handed or something… anyway, right arms extended, swaying their hips and singing the words, the audience can take their minds off of the tedium and purposelessness of their lives for the first time all week. They can feel part of something big, and the despair lifts. The words become even more inspiring:
“king of kings, lord of lords, there’s no other
we crown you now with worship and honours
holy holy god almighty, jesus lord of all”
(repeat x 50)
The guitarist switches his classical guitar for a strat and starts to gurn as he plays an AOR solo.
The arms sway faster, the woman’s punches become more violent and the rest of the black-suits on the stage also raise their right arms to absorb the holy-rays.

Suddenly the whole scene has become eerily reminiscent of a Nazi rally.

“No Dougal, Fascists and Priests are not the same thing at all. Fascists dress in black and go around telling people what to do, whereas preists…..” (Father Ted)


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