Anyone who reads my theological reflections may have noticed that I invariably try to conclude with a thought-provoking one-liner. This may include a touch of satire or humour.
I think I acquired this habit from a tradition that arose during the many missions that Jill and I have led to Mozambique and Swaziland.
Here the trick is to spot an incident that has occurred during a particular day and pen what became known as “The News”. This being set to a jaunty Calypso melody and accompanied with a guitar, has the following lyrical structure:
The Refrain goes:
It’s in the news, it’s in the news, indubitably it’s in the news
Some makes you happy some gives you the blues
But nevertheless, it’s all in the news.
Then would follow a four line verse with a humorous “snap in the tale.”
For example, a young man named Scott while helping to paint a Mozambican pastor’s church building almost got himself electrocuted because he backed into some bare wires he had failed to notice.
The News that day went:
This is truly shocking news that we hear
That Scott has two twenty volts in his rear
He’s God’s man-of-power-for-the-hour we know
He’s got power from above
and power from below
Then there was another young man, name of Brayden, who started out on his first preach whereupon all the Mozambican ladies in the front row proceeded to whip out their boobs and feed their babies – which Brayden found a mite distracting.
The News that evening went as follows:
When Braden takes his preaching station,
He finds himself with a major temptation,
But with only the slightest hesitation,
He keeps abreast of the situation.
And so on; I have strings of such doggerel. I was even asked to sing some news at the wedding of a couple who had been on mission with us, a Congolese man marrying a Zulu girl. Well, that was a first.
But to return to the brief article entitled, “The Holy It”, what I hoped to gently convey to the worthy women who coined the formula, “The Parent, The Sibling and the Holy It,” and to those who shared such views was: “Really Ladies this is unlikely to catch on and besides it is doctrinally unsound. (Not that doctrinal unsoundness is proof against popularity) Well, such an irenic approach is a lot to pack into a single punch line and I manifestly failed.
Interestingly, my first attempt was say, tongue-in cheek, “This is unlikely to be improved upon,” and then it occurred to me that readers would conclude that I was advocating the new formula and so I changed it to, “It remains to be seen if this will gain much traction.” And would you know, folk were still left wondering whether I was seriously considering the change.
is always telling me that people do not understand my humour.
So, I conclude that the
best thing men can do to assist the feminist cause is to listen to their