The Vatican's New 7 Deadly Sins
©2017 Hal Padgett
—Both the Vatican report and my soul searching are real—
Although it’s tremendous fun for a naive Methodist boy like me to tease the Roman Catholic Church—from the pope down to the ravaged, swollen tongues of its lowliest boot-licking devotees—there’s really nothing funny about the Roman Catholic Church itself. Peculiar, frightening, ridiculous? Yes. But not funny.
According to the spiritual penal codes that serve as foundation for the Roman Catholic Church, my next and final destination upon departing this mortal coil will be the roiling entrails of Hell. This of course could easily be avoided by confession. But I can’t confess because I’m not Roman Catholic. And I can’t become Roman Catholic unless I first prostrate my soul by absorbing the dreck known as the catechism. And that’s just not going to happen, my friends, due to my fundamental blind faith that it’s a load of crap.
At least I hope it’s a load, because here’s my shoddy self-rating on the Vatican’s modern take of the original Seven Deadly Sins:
1. “Bioethical” violations such as birth control: I never really stopped to count the exact number of times I have engaged in sex with a woman when neither of us employed sperm damns or ova shields. Probably somewhere around a million, or at least way up in the hundreds. Or at the very least more times than I can count on one hand. (And I’m talking about way back in the day, back when noth-ing really mattered. Or so it seemed.) But my point is that this just might make me virtuous (or a worst case scenario of break-even) in the eyes of the Roman Catholic Church.
2. “Morally dubious” experiments such as stem cell research: I can’t afford it. The insurmountable obstacle of having to find millions of dollars for the right equipment, the cost of rental space for a laboratory, the sky-rocketing price of basic utilities and the dreadful prospect of staffing has pretty much nipped this aspiration in the bud for me—and in the process has most likely increased my virtuousness in the eyes of the Catholic church.
3. Drug abuse: I was never much of a druggie. Truly. I'm serious. Major salvation points for me.
4. Polluting the environment: I was ignorant of environmental concerns between the time of my birth in 1951 (original sin?) until around the mid-1980s. And even then it just sounded like a bunch of
do-gooders. It was around 1995 when the truth became ines-capable. Since then I’ve mostly done the right thing, but sometimes I don’t just because I’m a fragile man who is often too damn tired to be bothered with yet one more daily inconvenience on top of the already existing daily inconveniences. But at least I feel guilty. And that makes me ripe for confession, penance, and forgiveness. Except that I’m not Roman Catholic. Oh Lord, who is that faceless sickle-wielding specter in the black hooded robe atop yonder hill?
5. Contributing to widening divide between rich and poor: Guilty. But I should get off with a verbal warning because my contributions to the widening divide come from the bottom, due to my extraordinary inability to pay attention to anything on a sustained basis. Fry me up as you skin me alive then tie me down, O Mighty Satan Lord of All That Is Painful, as you force me to swallow for all eternity your maggot-infested feces!
6. Excessive wealth: Hold off on that one-way ticket to Hell for now, baby. The very poverty that I complained about in New Deadly Sin #5, and had put me at high risk for eternal suffering in Hell, now seems to be an apparent reprieve.
7. Creating poverty: Forget all that Pollyannaish optimism I spewed in the new Deadly Sin #6 section. It looks like that in addition to spending eternity drunk on a maggot-infested eternal flow of Satanic effluvia, I’ll also be spending a couple of eons locked inside a small, enclosed geothermic fissure infested with perpetual billowing plumes of vaporized sulfur and evanescent wafts of wino body odor—all the while serenaded by the nails-on-a-chalkboard shrieking of Michael Bolton pumped in through the underworld’s loudest sound system—no woofers, all tweeters. I will be naked, my hands behind my back, pinned together by porcupine needles and bound by strips of flesh from my own face, as a seedy core of physiological aberrations massage my boilinfested flesh with razor wire, followed by a rub down with pickling brine. Something thick and unpleasantly textured will be shoved into my hemorrhoid-plagued anus, repeatedly, and I will never know what it is, and it is the not knowing that shall be the worst of all. But I shall be assured by the Mighty Satan as he chortles through tidal bores of gangrenous ooze flowing from his massive six nostrils that “When the Michael Bolton stops, in the earth year 5617, the anal intrusion will stop as well.” (At least it’s something to look forward to. I know this is hell, but even a wretched sinner like me shouldn’t have to listen to that screaming asshole for more than 3,607 consecutive years.) The oppressive silence of the undead will be his only com-ment on the bleeding, the pain, the constant gnawing and licking of my shredded colon by variola-bearing, barb-tongued cloned rodents bred by geneticists who suffer every bit as horribly as they deserve, yet by some miscarriage of justice don’t seem to be suffering nearly the ferocious magnitude and variety of sheer horrors that I do.
Being raised Methodist was painful enough in the living world. Why must the curse follow me into the next world and torture my soul across the never-ending arc of eternity? What I had hoped for was the simple death of an atheist: ashes, or a reasonably short phase of decomposition, followed by the eternal bliss of nothingness . . .