Christian Science Institute Announces First Human Clones!

The Christian Science Institute (CSI) shocked the world Tuesday when they announced that they have successfully cloned human beings, and have also perfected a way to pass on knowledge, experience and personality to the clones.

“The loss of some of our greatest pastors and Christian leaders concerned us,” said Ron Boldbee, head scientist at CSI.  “We looked around and realized that the young Christians who remained showed no evidence of stepping up and filling the gap.  Then we thought, ‘If the secular world can clone sheep, why can’t we clone some shepherds?’”

Boldbee points out that CSI has already introduced cloned pastors into several locations with little or no complaints.  Congregants at Bayside Baptist say they prefer their new, cloned pastor to their previous “natural” pastor.  “For once I don’t have to do any work,” said one congregant, on the condition of anonymity.  “Laypeople can finally let the clergy do everything without feeling guilty.  If our pastor burns out we can grow another one.”

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A Guide to Arizona’s Immigration Law (Senate Bill 1070) for Non-Profit Christian Organizations

A Guide to Arizona’s Immigration Law (Senate Bill 1070) for Non-Profit Christian Organizations

Given the mandatory reporting of all suspected illegal immigrants to the state of Arizona, the State has received a flood of e-mails and phone calls asking for clarification on this law and its ramifications for non-profit Christian organizations.  The State has put together this helpful guide to assist you in assessing the suspiciousness of the people you minister to.

A quick list of suspicious attributes:

Black hair.  Remember, not all illegal immigrants are Latino.  Some are Chinese.  But if you see someone with black hair, it’s a safe bet that they are suspicious and should be reported.

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When your book is too crazy to fit into one genre....

Being a first time novelist, I've been surprised by a lot of things, one of which is the difficulty in explainng a book if it doesn't fit simply into one genre.  And that's been a problem with Imaginary Jesus: It's a comedy.  It's a novel.  It's theology.  It's fiction. It's autobiographical.  What possible genre could this be? Let's turn to's rating system to discover what they think.

First, an overview of the three categories that Amazon thinks that IJ fits into:

Good.  Okay.  So our comedy theology novel falls into Science Fiction Adventure (no doubt because our hero chases Jesus through "time and space"), Religious Fiction (no doubt because it has Jesus in it and is fiction), and in Single Women's Fiction (no doubt because the chicks dig me).  Hmm.  Let's see what sort of books that puts Imaginary Jesus up against.

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Free Hymns Album From Page CXVI

Today through May 4th you can download, for free, the entire first Hymns album by up and coming rock band Page CXVI.  Here's the link for that album.  Page CXVI has an amazing sound, and I'm glad they're giving this album away.  Part of the idea here is that you will love the first album and want to buy the new one, which is releasing this week.  You will want to buy the new one.  I'm going to go buy it right now.

I have listened to this album (the first one) about a thousand times.  It's really amazing, and it has done exactly what they designed it to do... brought new life to beloved hymns.  I love hymns, I really do, but frankly I do not listen to them outside of the church building.  Or I didn't before this album.  If you're skeptical (why be skeptical, it's FREE!), take a listen to a couple of songs.  I love their version of "Joy".  And, well, their version of everything.  It's powerful stuff.  Take a listen and leave your thoughts here, if you like.

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Outrage Over The Church Name Shortage

The International Church Name Service (ICNS) publicly apologized today for the recent lack of quality church names.  “We’ve had some complaints,” said Hubert Smith, public relations officer for the ICNS.  “But we have been serving churches by creating and parceling out names for several decades, and we assure the Christian community that we will continue to do so.”

Many pastors, however, are calling for reform.  “My church is called RiverWild,” said Pastor Bob Frigate.  “They didn’t even give us a space between the two words.  And we live in the desert.  We’re sixty miles from the nearest river.”

The Cup in Portland, Oregon also complained.  “We’ve managed to build a compelling vision around the name, something about communion and the Last Supper.  But c’mon!  The Cup?  It really was a stretch for us.  On the positive side, it has brought in quite a few athletes.”

Meanwhile, Mars Hill church and Mars Hill Seminary in Seattle report continued confusion over their shared name, despite the fact that they are completely separate organizations.  “We had a surplus of pagan church names for a few years,” Smith admits. “But being named for the Roman god of war hasn’t slowed their growth.”  Meanwhile, Thor’s Hammer Presbyterian Church and Vulcan’s Forge Baptist have filed formal complaints against the ICNS. 

Vulcan’s Forge pastor, Sam Mitchell, said, “If one more Trekkie comes to my church dressed for a convention I don’t know what I’m going to do.  When they look at me with those expressionless eyes and say, ‘The name of your church is illogical’ I just want to bash their little pointy-eared heads in.  As if an alien planet named for the god of blacksmiths or whatever makes sense.”

“I implore everyone to remain calm,” Smith said, emphasizing ICNS’s satisfied customers, like Jeremiah Son, pastor of Jesus! Jesus! Jesus! Korean Church.  “I especially like the exclamation points,” Son said.  “A nice touch and they didn’t charge us extra!”

Smith asks that churches remain charitable while they continue to iron out their naming system and the supply problems.  The ICNS has been experimenting with foreign-language names to increase availability.  “We started with simple languages, like pig Latin,” says Smith.  “But Irst-fay Ethodist-May found that it encouraged speaking in tongues, which made them uncomfortable.  So we’re working on popularizing Latin and Greek names.”

But even that innovation has been met with uncertainty.  Several members at Imago Dei expressed outrage that a dead language had been used to name their church.  One man shook his head and walked away, too angry to continue our conversation.  “I thought it was Spanish,” he said.  “What a rip off.” 

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Friendship, Suicide, Loss and Jesus

I had this friend named Collette.  I met her in a creative writing class at my junior college.  As I recall she had written a story which turned out to be a thinly veiled story about herself, in which the main character was dealing with some conflict with her husband.  I mentioned in the feedback that the story was frightening, to see such a clear example of spousal abuse, and she came and talked to me afterward, to ask if I really thought what she had written about constituted abuse.  I told her I thought it did, and in some mysterious way this caused us to become friends.  That's my first memory of Collette.

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Why Imaginary Jesus?

If I come across a bunch of people sitting outside my church selling doves and changing money, I know I should make a whip out of ropes and turn their tables over and yell at them.  But what is the most Christ-like action when buying my lunch at McDonald's?  Should I buy a Filet-O-Fish sandwich?  Should I turn a milkshake into wine?  I spend my life guessing what Jesus would do instead of living like him.  I invent a picture of who he is instead of getting to know him.  We need a way to identify places in our lives where we've adopted a false Jesus for our own convenience, and talk about real, practical ways to connect with the living, breathing Christ. 

The fine folks at ConversantLife have invited me to guest blog here for the month of April, and I look forward to getting to know you during that time, and hopefully together we will discover some insights into following the true Jesus. I work full time with Campus Crusade for Christ, specifically working with college students interested in serving Christ overseas.  I'm also the author of the recently released novel Imaginary Jesus, which is a comedic look at the ridiculous Jesuses we follow instead of the real thing.

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Matt Mikalatos wrote the comedy/theology novel "Imaginary Jesus." He is married, has three daughters and is intensely passionate about finding the real Jesus.