Via Musings of an Expagan comes this "not a parody" alert.
This Sunday church service will take five minutes and you don’t even have to get out of the car.
The Metropolitan Church of the Quad Cities, 3019 N. Harrison St., Davenport, is sponsoring “Drive-Thru Church” from 10 a.m. to noon Sunday.
Just pull up in our parking lot,” the Rev. Rich Hendricks suggests.
He promises some humor in the offerings. Congregants, for example, will be dressed like anglers in tune with a fish theme.
This is a way to try and reach out to people who might not otherwise approach the doors of the church,” he said. “Some people don’t relate to traditional church services at all.”
The Harrison Street location prompted Metropolitan Church to choose Memorial Day weekend for the event, said Loretta Gamble of Davenport.
People will be busy doing any number of activities but we want to allow folks to have a moment or two, if that’s what they can spare, to think about worship,” she said.
Clowns stationed on Harrison Street will attract cars to the church parking lot located on West 31st Street. Drivers will be greeted by a team of three “anglers” and supplied with the daily scripture and a take-home homily. Prayer requests will be honored.
Everyone will be given communion, but this will be specially delivered in a tackle box, the minister said, in a clean bait cup.
A station will be set up for an informal church choir, and those interested may exit their vehicles and sing. Participants also will take home a special gift in the form of brightly-colored fish key chains or other accoutrements.
No cost is involved but a free-will offering will be collected with part of the proceeds going to AIDS Project Quad Cities.
While a drive-thru service is unusual for this area, Hendricks said his church is not the first in the world to do one. Congregations on both coasts have established drive-thru services and received national attention for it. The non-denominational World of Faith Family Worship Center in Suffolk, Va., relocated to a former bank building in 2001 and began the practice, according to Jet magazine.
The Los Angeles Times reported in 2003 that the Main Place Christian Fellowship, a Southern Baptist congregation south of Los Angeles, established a drive-thru facility in a former photo kiosk across the street from the main church. It was especially valued by unattached Christians, the newspaper said.
Gamble believes the drive-thru event is a creative way to disperse information about the congregation she’s belonged to for more than 10 years.
In our church, we believe that God created each and every one of us as good, and we celebrate that,” she said. [Source]
Make sure you also read John’s comments on the story.
Just the though of a drive-thru service is bad enough and to combine it with clowns to attract "customers" is just bizarre. The road to horrific liturgy is paved with good intentions. It does make me ponder about a Catholic version of this and I have previously covered one aspect of this in my Jiffy Shriven post – which coincidentally was sparked by another of John’s posts. First thing though is that Catholics would need to get their cars fitted with those hydraulic lifts used commonly by low-riders to raise and lower a car at will. By lowering and then raising the front you could simulate a genuflection. Mabye rewire the windshield wipers to wipe in the movement of the sign of the cross. I would think that saying Amen instead of honking would still be appropriate. Would they have an "Eternal Happiness Meal" for those kids not old enough to receive Communion or a simple blessing? I kind of like the idea of something like a St. Francis action figure being included with it or a St. Dominic action figure with reinforced knees for doing theology on. Or possibly a St. Catherine of Sienna action figure with removable head for veneration*. After receiving Communion would the priest ask "Do you want grace with that?" Would a more traditional drive-in Mass require a setup like a 1950’s hamburger drive-ins where cars would park on a communion parking rail and the priest would rollerskate to each car bringing Communion? Besides since speakers at drive thru are so bad you would never know if it was in Latin or the vernacular so that would remove one contentious problem. Of course many Catholics are already selecting their theology like off a menu as it is now so for them it would not be too much to adapt to. So for cafeteria Catholics for ease you could have special Combos for common pairings "I’ll have the #1 Social Justice special. That does come without condemnation of abortion – right?" It would be nice to be able to supersize grace.
*Lauren of Cnytr in an email exchange once suggested something along that line to me before.