BLOOMINGTON, INDIANA – Father Thomas (“No Doubt About It”) Tomkins, rector of the newly-minted Saint Pugnacios Online Obnoxodox Church, waves off criticism of his new parish. “They persecuted Paul. They persecuted Polycarp. They persecuted Ralph Hargrove –”
“Wait, who?” interrupted our intrepid editor, to no avail.
“But they can’t stop the movement of the Spirit.”
“So whose omoriphon are you under?” asked our intrepid editor.
“You’re one of those ethnics, aren’t you?” asked Father Thomas.
“I’m a convert, but who’s your bishop?” asked OIE.
“Beautiful plumage, the Norwegian Blue,” said Tomkins, inexplicably.
Seeing that line of questioning was proving unfruitful, your editor decided to take a different tack.
“Who is this Saint Pugnacios? I’ve never heard of him.”
“But surely you’ve met his followers,” said Tomkins. “They’re everywhere online. The Obnoxodox, as the good if cranky saint’s followers refer to themselves, are a common sight on Twitter, Facebook, and many mailing lists, including lists from universities I am too humble to name.”
“But don’t they already have parishes?”
“Some do. But some show no signs of ever having darkened a parish door. And for them, especially those who would rather argue than rub elbows with lesser beings whose Orthodox cred is surely suspect, there is St. Pug’s.”
“Is outrage!” said Fr. Vasiliy Vasileivich, longtime admirer of St. Pugnacios and rector of Saints Vladimir and Olga and Boris and Gleb Russian Orthodox Church of Sydney, Australia. “Orthodox Church is living body of Christ, not disembodied body of writers of online screeds.”
“So are you a friend of the Obnoxodox?” asked Tomkins.
“No, I am not so,” answered Father Vasiliy. “In fact they are hating me, and have been writing grams of nasty for over one decade to this so-to-call-him Reader Alexiy here for writing about me.”
“Don’t you think they might have a point?” asked Tomkins.
“On top of their pointy heads, yes,” answered Father V.
“Look, I see it’s time for our Thursday night Vespers service,” said Tomkins. “I’m afraid I’ll have to say goodbye.”
“Thursday what?” said Father Vasiliy. “How can it be Vespers service without church or icons or candles or—”
“We have jpegs of all those things in our worship app,” came the reply.
“Obnoxodox?” said Father Vasiliy. “Is more like to Pretendodox.”
“That’s pretty good, Father,” said our intrepid editor. “Buy you a coffee?”
“Real coffee or virtual coffee?” asked Father.
“Real. Virtual coffee is most unsatisfying.”
“As is virtual Orthodoxy,” said Father V.
“Truer words have never been spoken,” said our intrepid editor.
Copyright © 2015 Alex Riggle. All Rights Reserved.