2.17.2006

What Would Jesus Wear?

When I was in college, my roommate and I had an elaborate plan that involved purchasing a life-sized lawn ornament of Jesus Christ and dressing Him according to the season: a toga for Greek Week, a pointy paper birthday hat and a plastic kazoo on Christmas, a Hawiian shirt over Spring Break, etc. But a lawn Jesus is expensive and a college student's budget is small, so we were never able to pull it off. I remember the anticipation, though, and am not being disrespectful* in the least when I say we were really looking forward to welcoming the Big Guy into our dorm.

More recently, my husband, brother, mother and mother-in-law went to the Christmas vigil at the Catholic church my husband attended as a child. It's a contemporary building with a covered entryway more reminiscent of a hotel lobby than a house of worship. "It's Courtyard by Jesus," my brother chortled. And I thought that wasn't a bad analogy for my kind of Jesus--accessible, accomodating and just as susceptible to the whims of modern architecture as the rest of us.

Pretty soon it's going to be time to introduce my daughter to Uncle Jesus, but the problem is I haven't been able to reach Him myself. Every time I catch a glimpse, the ugly head of institutional Catholicism rears itself yet again and obstructs my view. Priests can't be women; can't be married; can't encourage the faithful to think. With all those barriers, how can the real Jesus be anything but out of reach?

I wonder what a 6 foot plaster Jesus goes for nowadays? Maybe that's where I should start. I've got a North Face jacket and a knitted cap with His name written all over it.


*That former college roommate is now a minister with a degree from Yale Divinity School. I couldn't make this shit up if I tried.

11 Comments:

Blogger GIRL'S GONE CHILD said...

Funny ass shit. Great fucking post! Sorry for cursing in the Jesus post. Luckily I am a Jew. Phew!

7:28 PM  
Blogger Mom101 said...

My advertising brain is spinning!

Courtyard by Jesus. Where there's always room.

Courtyard by Jesus. Let him who is without sin have the king-sized bed.

Courtyard by Jesus. Always immaculate.

Courtyard by Jesus. Ask and it will be given you, just dial 6844.

8:55 PM  
Blogger Spencer said...

Try the UCC (United Church of Christ).

Just a thought.

"No matter who you are, or where you are on life's journey, you are welcome."

(we're the ones who support gay marriage, by the way)

12:50 AM  
Blogger jm0pper said...

You know, I thought it would take something extreme to pull me out of my lurking ways.

This will sound funny, but as Binkabeth knows that's just how I sound.

Jesus fucking Christ are you kidding?

Come on, you talk like you shun the church, but if I recall you were married and your child baptised in the same RC establishment. Recently at that.

You are the biggest contradiction in the world. You say that shortly you will be exposing your daughter to Catholosism? Um, she is Baptised, like it or not she is exposed. That's like saying, hey my son just had his Brisk(sp.) and soon I will expose him to Judaism.

I am pretty sure that you and I will never understand religion. We aren't capable of it. We shouldn't try to. I sometimes find myself analysing faith, and force myself to stop. What's the point? What is to gain from convincing yourself something else? I work in a logic filled profession but relent certain things to miracles and faith.

To be honest, without the thought of heaven and God, life can seem pretty daunting sometimes.

2:28 AM  
Blogger Alisyn said...

I could comment forever on this post, but I'll spare you.

This past holiday season was a real turning point for me, as I stopped indentifying as a "cultural christian" and realized that I am an agnostic. The catalyst of that realization was the state of modern religion, faith, christianity (if that's what you want to call it -- I think it's as far from christianity as one could possibly get), especially in this country. I'm just fed the fuck up with it. It's just heartbreaking to me that so many people the world over use the name of Jesus, who was by all definitions a powerful leader, healer and pacifist, as a tool to divide and oppress people.

If there ever was a time for people to lighten up and erect their own Lawn Jesus -- it's now! My Lawn Jesus would be wearing a nip/suck t-shirt, and would stand up for gay marriage by getting hitched to Mohammad.

11:48 AM  
Blogger Mom101 said...

JM: Briss.

Allisyn: I (heart) you.

8:33 PM  
Anonymous chris said...

Jesus and Mohammed's wedding wouldn't be that big of a deal. Most people probably wouldn't even know about it considering that pictures of the grooms are forbidden.

8:43 PM  
Blogger Caloden said...

Good Christ, a yard Jesus. Fabulous! Everybody should have one, it would be far better than those silly holiday banners people hang from their decks. I am all for a user friendly JC. Lord knows it could help us Catholics in the PR department, the Jews might warm up to him and religious ed would take on an entirely new flavor. That was forward thinking on your part.

11:27 PM  
Blogger Spencer said...

I don't think I've ever seen a lawn Jesus, but where we used to go to the beach, there were a LOT of bathtub Marys. Or is that Marys on a Half Shell?

1:39 PM  
Anonymous Lisa S said...

ohhh what an interesting post and Alisyn.....your comment:

If there ever was a time for people to lighten up and erect their own Lawn Jesus -- it's now! My Lawn Jesus would be wearing a nip/suck t-shirt, and would stand up for gay marriage by getting hitched to Mohammad.

Still has me laughing...I think I {heart} you too!

5:42 PM  
Blogger Karen said...

I'm with you. I was mistakenly born into a Catholic family. I think I should have been a Unitarian.

10:54 PM  

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