April 22, 2020
The Church of the Most Holy and Righteous Drug Warby Ballard Quass
.....And there went out from Judaea, a commandment forbidding the possession of psychoactive plants, for the King was sore enraged that his people might thence derive thoughts that did not conduce to the seamless governance of his dominion. And among these dangerously enlightening flora, hence to be stigmatized evermore with the epithet of 'drugs', were, in no particular order: the kava-kava root of the South Pacific Isles, the bark of the Virola tree of South America, the roots of Tabernanthe ibigoa of equatorial Africa, the Psilocybe cyanescens mushroom of the Pacific Northwest, and all manner of "sacred fungi" from Central America.
May the anti-drug lord give his blessings to today's scripture reading.
Looks like we have some newcomers in the pews today. Welcome one and all. Please remember to sign the register in the narthex as you leave later this morning. For those who would like to become a full member of the church, it's a simple process. Just bring a notarized urine sample to our mini lab located in the Sunday School building on the second floor. Once we verify that you are free of plant substances created by the devil, we will send you a formal invitation to join the Most Holy and Righteous Church of the Drug War on the Hill.
I know, I know. That name is a little confusing. It makes it sound like the drug war itself is on the hill, whereas, as we all know, the drug war is a universal struggle against evil plant medicines and thus is omnipresent. But the church had spent a small fortune on signs before someone brought these ambiguous connotations to the attention of the budget committee. And if I haven't confused you already, how about this? The true name of the church is not just the Most Holy and Righteous Church of the Drug War on the Hill. It is the Most Holy and Righteous Church of the Drug War on the Hill, Cathedral, Tabernacle, and Church Agape Fellowship and Daycare Center and Pillar and Ground of the Truth.
What can I say? That name was decided by committee during a very lengthy and acrimonious brainstorming session.
OK, get your hymnals out folks. We are now going to sing Rock of Ages, hymn number 295 in the New Drug War Edition of your songbook.
Just as sober as a judge
Through this wretched world I trudge
Full of sadness unalloyed
Leaving nature unemployed
But for my addictive pills
I renounce all hippie thrills.
Though my parents groan in death
Pot is never on their breath
Nor do mushrooms grow their brain
Nor the sacred ibogaine
Monkey see and monkey do
I am sober, how 'bout you?
Comes the sad man to a rope
When he gives up all his hope
But he could do worse than die
By deciding to get high
Let him go with drug-less breath
There are worser things than death.
"Worser things than death"? Oh, dear. Well, it's the first edition of the New Drug War Hymnal. I'm sure they will be making improvements as time goes on.
You guys may be seated, by the way.
(Whenever you're ready.)
Turning to church notices. The Royal Order of Self-Righteous Buffaloes will be holding free drug testing from 9:00 to 5:00 at the old firehouse on Stubbins Road from Monday through Friday of this coming week. Names of those who pass the test will be featured prominently in next week's bulletin. Remember, folks, if you pass ten certified drugs tests during a calendar year, you are eligible for our church sainthood program, which confers posthumous sainthood upon any congregation member who passes a minimum of 75 notarized drug tests during their lifetime.
I should mention, there is a nominal registration fee for the program: $50 per candidate per sainthood. There's also a $50 processing fee for anyone who fails a drug test since our staff then has to go back and recalculate your morality score while taking your lapse of sobriety into account. That may sound easy, but this requires a subjective determination by our Board of Bishops, and, well, our Board of Bishops can't even agree on what brand of toilet tissue to buy for the Sunday School building rest rooms.
That's all the time we have time for. I'll ask our organist, Goodie Temperance Babcock, to take us out of here with a big 'un everybody's kind of diggin'. It's Bach's Concerto for Orchestra and Drug Warrior in D Minor. It's all yours, Goodie!