Bruce C., a reader, sent me the following suggestions in response to the Rainbow Sash controversy:
I was curious if the Archdiocese, while in the process of researching for a uniform policy towards sash-wearers is still going to allow the typical sash-wearer to receive communion, if other kinds of sash-wearers would receive the same deference. I am not suggesting sashes in the spirit of protest and animosity, but more sashes such as the identified gentleman that are worn in the spirit of ‘celebration’. I humbly submit my own idea for celebration.
1) Alcoholics who are proud of their state of life could wear sashes made of bar napkins, or beer labels, because – hey! Jesus went to a week long kegger too, and even made some special brew when his mom told him the kegs were dry.
2) Gluttons are people too! How about a sash of sausage links! Or Big Mac’s strung together ready to snack on in case the homily gets a little long.
3)I Notice that the sidewalk around my downtown office is always littered with placards from the local strip clubs, easily recycled into sashes- bad taste you say? You judgmental bigots bent upon oppression!
4) And speaking of oppression – how about communist flags made into sashes? The problem with communism wasn’t the murderers that implemented it, we need the right people to do it. 100,000,000 murdered people is the price you pay to get it right.
5) What about the slothful? They will get back to us when they get around to it.
6) And don’t forget the proud! They sure won’t! Sashes made of self-portraits and awards no matter how insignificant celebrate that I am receiving a God who wants to be with ME!
7) Angry people may just as well wear a sash made of emotional hand-grenades. Mostly finger gestures.
8) Envious people can make a sash out of old "He who dies with the most toys wins" posters.
9) Greedy people – money, fake money of course. Why would you wreck good dollars just to make a garment?
10) Viva Los Vegas! light-up dice and cards, add some slot machine sounds and you’ve got a party that never ends!
Remember the issue here is not to promote antagonism against church teaching, or morality in general – Its all about "celebrating". Whatever that means, fill in the blank. I would be curious if the communion minister would eventually loose patience with it all and finally say "Enough! this isn’t your stage for the pushing of your personal agenda! This is the place where we humbly receive a merciful and just God into our bodies!". Probably not without a good deal of study on the subject, I would expect.
Great suggestions. I am wondering if I should look into getting the disordered sash concession at Catholic book stores. There might be some money in making sashes that proclaim a disordered message. Why should homosexual activists have all the fun sashaying around in their sashes?
- Adulterous Pride Sashes – To bring the gifts, witnesses, and the challenge of adulterers into the heart of the Church. Sashes could be made up of a string of shattered wedding rings or pictures of their latest soul mate.
- Pride Pride Sashes – Why not be prideful that you are prideful. To often prideful people are oppressed by the reading and homilies demanding that they conform and be humble. This talk of Jesus humbling himself and coming in the form of a servant is hurtful and non-caring when it comes to the prideful. Bruce’s suggestion of self-portraits and awards is great for this. Sash’s could be made with plastic pockets like what comes in wallets to display your greatest possession – yourself.
- Contraception Pride Sashes – How about all those Catholics that are oppressed by a Church that just won’t roll with the times. Come on the majority of Catholics practice contraception so while they are hardly ever oppressed by homilies on this subject. The Catechism and Church teaching still hasn’t given in on this. The sashes could be made out of birth control pill containers strung together with condoms.
- Uncharitable Pride Sashes – For those who do not have a charitable disposition and are imposed on when some busy-body usher shoves a offering basket under their nose they can have a sash that says it all. The sash would come with lettering saying "Charity begins at home – my home and that’s it."
And if sashes are fine for those who dissent from church teaching how about those who are upset with liturgical mediocrity?
- Gregorian Chant Sash Movement – In a show of solidarity with the past and to dissent from OCP and GIA sashes could be made of Gregorian Chant CD attached together with mini-organ clips.
Now you know of course the Gregorian Change Sash Movement would be stopped in it’s tracks and somehow amazingly Bishops would find that this was inappropriate and should immediately be stopped. Obviously I would never actually advocate the use of such a sash but it would be interesting to see Archbishop Flynn’s reaction.