Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Pope to Everyone Else: You're All Going to Hell

Dear Non-Catholics,

By the time you read this, you may already have stumbled over this newsflash - Heaven is simply out of reach for you sods. Nice, decent sods, but damned ones regardless. So says the Pope.

I think we can all agree this obviously applies to non-Christians - even if its awkward to fault Inuits who for generations lived out of reach of Christian missionaries and even more awkward for the generations of humanity that lived before Jesus Christ showed up. Chalk those lost generations, now burning in the fiery pits of hell, suffering at the pleasure of Balzebub himself, to "shit happens".

However, it may surprise you to find out that a whole mess of Christians will be shuffled to the eternal incinerator as well. I'd recommend that our evangelical neighbours stop crossing their fingers for the rapture - it ain't going to work out the way you planned. Sure, we probably take it for granted that anyone in the United Church wasn't going to make the cut - but Anglicans and those take-the-fun-out-of-life Presbyterians will be huffing mad that they ever bothered in the first place to no avail. Probably most miffed will be Orthodox Christians - they come so close to making it - and if they only doffed their hat to the Pope, Heaven would be theirs.

Some of you may ask, why did the Pope decide suddenly to drop this nugget on us today. Well, let me suggest two reasons.

One, it plays to the converted. At heart, we Catholics like the fact that ours is not a religion of exceptions or blurred lines. The Pope's all about love and friendship, if you can stomach his punishing left hook.

Two, there's competition for souls down in South America. The competition is fierce, fast and spreading faster than a winter flu. This was a friendly reminder that you may have more fun elsewhere, but not forever.