Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Last Judgment - A Nightmare

My wife and one of my employees are great fans of the show which I have come to call "AMERICAN IDOLATRY." Now that auditions for this paragon of post-modern American culture are on again, I have a recurring nightmare. It goes something like this:

RYAN SEACREST: "Hello, America. Here we are in Sheol, the place of the dead, for our judges to begin THE LAST JUDGMENT. Our judges will review the life of each contestant to determine where he or she will spend the afterlife. Will it be perfect peace in Heaven in the presence of the Beatific Vision, a period of cleansing in Purgatory, or everlasting damnation in Hell. Well, here comes our first contestant. Contestant number 666 who hails from the deep South and calls himself the Bad Catholic. How are you doing today, Bad."

BAD CATHOLIC: "I'm doing great Ryan."

RYAN SEACREST: "How do you think the judges will like the review of your life."

BAD CATHOLIC: "Well, Ryan I'm confident that I'm a shoo-in for Purgatory, and I'm sure that I was so faithful to Christ and His Church that I'm liable to get straight into Heaven on the first try. I'm shootin' for the Beatific Vision, Ryan."

RYAN SEACREST: "We'll see what our judges think of Contestant Number 666!"

Bad Catholic is ushered into the audition room:

SIMON: "Number 666, Bad Catholic. OK, justify your life."

BAD CATHOLIC: "Simon, I faithfully attended mass almost every Sunday, read lots of Christian literature, and was an awesome Catholic blogger on the internet."

SIMON: "That's it?"

BAD CATHOLIC: "Oh, no. I was a faithful believer and lived a good Christian life."

SIMON: "Oh, really? It appears from your record that you're quite the hypocrite, aren't you? You criticized others, you were downright nasty to a lot of people, you had a lot of hidden sins in your heart. You didn't go to confession regularly, and you totally denied the words of Our Lord that to think it is as bad as to do it."

BAD CATHOLIC: "Uh, well, uh, I intended to go to confession . . . but, but, . . . I really wasn't that bad was I?"

SIMON: "What about what Our Lord said, that if you look upon a woman to lust after her you've committed adultery in your heart. How many times have you done that?"

BAD CATHOLIC: "Well, maybe a couple, but . . . but . . ."

SIMON: "The truth is you're disgusting and pathetic. I'm going to have to say 'NO.'
What do you say Paula?

PAULA: "You know, Simon's really right about all that unconfessed sin and lack of true repentance thing. But I kinda like you. Can't we just let him through to Purgatory and give him another chance, Simon?"

SIMON: "Absolutely not. He's had his chance and he blew it. Randy?"

RANDY: "Yo, Dawg. You know you really were just doin' a put on act with all that church goin' and stuff. And you probably dishonored Our Lord by receiving the Eucharist when your heart wasn't right. That's a BIG SIN, Dawg. You didn't do hardly any works of mercy, like visiting the sick and helping the poor, and when you did you did it grudgingly. The truth is you been a hypocrite, Dawg, just like Simon says. Sorry, Dawg, I gotta say NO."

The floor then opens beneath me, flames shoot up and I fall into the lake of everlasting fire as I hear Randy, say, "WELCOME TO HELL, BABY . . .!"

"O Jesus, watch over me always, especially today, or I shall betray you like Judas."
Saint Philip Neri


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