When April Fools Day comes on a Sunday, it's time to haul out the UU jokes. I'm not a big fan of the classic UU jokes (UU's honor the 10 Suggestions, pray "to whom it may concern", and the only time Jesus' name is heard is when the Janitor falls down the stairs, etc.) Those jokes all play off on the notion that this strange outfit that calls itself a religious organization is really a bunch of spiritual idiots. Ha ha. Ho Hum. Old hat.
Here are several of the new style UU jokes we told in church today. Like all jokes, they get their punch line from our foibles. I don't mind us having foibles. I'm just tired of the spiritual idiot foible. So here's a different batch.
Leader: How can you tell a Unitarian Universalist?
CR: I don’t know. How DO you tell a Unitarian Universalist
L: You can’t. They already know it all.
CR: Ok….Have you heard the latest UU miracle?
L: No. What’s the latest UU Miracle?
CR. Somebody saw the face of Ralph Waldo Emerson on a Tortilla.
L: That reminds me. Why wouldn’t Mr. Emerson ever let his dentist give him Novocain?
CR. Why not?
L. Emerson wouldn’t let his dentist give him Novocain because he wanted to transcend dental medication.
CR: Ouch. Humm… Ok: What did the UU who was studying Zen ask the Hotdog vendor?
L: I don’t know. What?
CR: Make me one with everything.
L: Ok…so, there were once two old guys talking to each other in a California Diner. One says to the other, “Have you ever delved into the mysteries of Eastern religion? And the other one says “Yes. I was once a Unitarian in Philadelphia.
CR. Have you ever heard UU’s compared to Jalapeno Peppers?
CR. One or two gives real spice to a dish, but a whole bunch together will bring tears to your eyes.
Judging by the laughter, they liked Transcending Dental Medication the best. But the biggest laughs went to the last joke, which isn't really a UU joke at all but is apropos of our iMinistry initiatives which involved recording sermons.
It seems that there was a Rabbi who was an extremely good preacher and his people loved to hear him preach on Friday evenings. They wanted him to also preach on Saturday morning. But he wanted to spend Saturday morning at home, in his jammies, with his family. So he got an idea. He would pre-record the sermon, and, since it is not permitted for Jews to turn switches on the sabbath, he would hire a Gentile to push the "on" button at the time of the sermon.
So he did that for several weeks. And that got the folks of his congregation to start thinking that they, too, would prefer to spend Saturday at home in their jammies with their families. And that if they sent tape recorders to the synagogue, they could listen to the rabbi’s sermon at their leisure.
And so the inevitable happened: the day came when the only people in the synagogue were Gentiles with tape recorders.
And that is the first known instance of artificial in-sermonation