A Letter to the Pope: Saint Starbucks
by Noah Lugeons
Yet again, the papacy has spent a week highlighting its own ineptitude. The reign of Pope Benedict XVI continues to be marked by a long and embarrassing series of revelations as to the depth of the sex abuse scandal, broken only by misguided and increasingly asinine attempts to recover their public image.
This week began with the pope issuing yet another new guideline for dealing with accusations of clerical abuse. Yet again the report failed to recognize the institutional role in the scandal and again put the power over these matters in the hands of the local bishops who have the greatest incentive to cover things up. This latest revision reduces the focus on outside groups unaffiliated with the church. What’s worse is that they continue to act as though the correct response to this abomination is to handle it within the church rather than allow the courts to deal with it in the way that secular societies demand.
But this was only the first fuck-up this week and Pope Benny is nothing if not an overachiever. To further embarrass the pontiff, a new report was released a few days later detailing a long study of the root causes of the unchecked pedophilia. The study, funded entirely by the church and collected from data provided entirely by the church, took four years and cost upwards of $2 million.
The John Jay College of Criminal Justice published the findings of the report a few days ago and strangely enough, very little of the blame was placed on the institution itself and its policy of 3-pedophile-Monte. Instead, they chose to blame those damn kids with their long hair and their rock music.
Through it all, Pope Benny hangs his head in shame and wishes old Harold Camping had been right about the rapture. He’s tried his damnedest to produce a newsworthy story about Catholics that doesn’t include the words “child” and “molestation” in conjunction. They’ve put John Paul in the beatification express line and waived all the normal waiting periods and traditional taboos in hopes of cashing in on the popularity of the pope who actually presided over the pedophilia scandal. But it’s not enough.
Well, ever since he pulled me free from that alligator infested phone booth (remind me to tell you the story sometime), I feel like I owe Pope Benny and in his hour of need I want to be there for him. So I’ve come up with an idea that might help take the focus of their literal translation of the whole “coming unto the children” bit: E-Bay Canonizations.
Think of the potential here. The Vatican could engage a younger, more internet savvy audience, they could raise some money to make up for the billions they’ve paid out in hush money to rape victims, they would get new pagan idols to pray to and, best of all, the outrage would take some of the focus off the sex abuse scandal and the Catholic Church’s appalling stance on contraception.
I can see the papacy resisting this idea, of course. If you just offer sainthood to the highest bidder than you couldn’t end up venerating PZ Myers or Steven Colbert so I also come bearing a plan B. You could just establish a market rate for sainthood and attach a rider that allows you to boot us heretical non believers. I would imagine any company that does heavy business in South America would be happy to pay a premium for an officially recognized canonization.
If that’s too much, you could even give existing saints sponsors. I could see a defense attorney shelling out big bucks to sponsor Saint Jude. Blue Cross/Blue Shield could start a bidding war with Humana over Saint Luke. For a smaller fee, a local doctor could sponsor Saint Werenfridus, the patron saint of stiff joints.
I know this idea might sound extreme, but it will cost a hell of a lot less than your bullshit study and it couldn’t possibly make you look stupider than you look endorsing a study that blames your institutional indiscretion on the Love Generation.