A Baptist pastor in Tennessee says he now regrets that his church distributed an anti-Catholic leaflet that a local Catholic priest decried as “hate material.”
Pastor Jonathan Hatcher, who leads Conner Heights Baptist Church in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., has removed the inflammatory leaflet, “The Death Cookie,” from his congregation. He says he will no longer distribute it.
“Looking back, I don’t think it was the right tract to give out,” Hatcher told FoxNews.com. “I have some others that wouldn’t have been as offensive. But I will continue to spread the gospel — that’s what I’m called by Christ to do. I’m still going to hand out tracts, but not ‘The Death Cookie.’”
The illustrated leaflet, distributed since 1988 by California-based Chick Publications, features an ominous character with a snake around his neck who advises a man that he can control the world by establishing a false religion based upon worshipping a cookie. Upon taking the control of the cookie, the man becomes the “papa” — a reference to the pope.
“The creation of the wafer god was the greatest religious con job in world history,” the leaflet reads. “ … This religious weapon is one of the most powerful idols ever created by man.”
“It says the devil has made a pact with the pope to take over the world through a false god,” Father Jay Flaherty, who heads nearby Holy Cross Catholic Church, told FoxNews.com.
There’s more at the link, but basically it’s the standard Southern Baptist line that “Catholics won’t make it into Heaven” crap that Catholics have heard their whole lives. A truth though – the line anyway, not the part about us not getting into Heaven. – because I have Southern Baptist relatives on both sides of my family and I’ve heard these little quips throughout my many years, mostly though since we moved to Tennessee. My Dad was a Catholic-covert, as is my wife, and while I love all my extended family, I am pretty sure a few of them don’t think they will be seeing any of my family in the afterlife. (Well, maybe not me but that has nothing to do with me being a Catholic I assure you.)
It reminds me of that joke though.
A man arrives at the gates of heaven. St. Peter asks, “Religion? ” The man says, “Methodist. ” St. Peter looks down his list, and says, “Go to room 24, but be very quiet as you pass room 8. ” Another man arrives at the gates of heaven. “Religion? ” “Jewish. ” “Go to room 18, but be very quiet as you pass room 8. ” A third man arrives at the gates. “Religion? ” “Catholic.” “Go to room 11, but be very quiet as you pass room 8. ” The man says, “I can understand there being different rooms for different religions, but why must I be quiet when I pass room 8? ” St. Peter tells him, “Well that’s the Southern Baptists, and they think they’re the only ones here.”
I find this amusing myself, especially since when we first moved to Tennessee we were warned that they “hunt Catholics with dogs.” ** So far we’ve managed to elude them though due to our super-natural powers of beer, bingo, and gun-toting nuns.
** I know it would be clearer to say “they use dogs to hunt Catholics,” but that is just not how it is said down here in the South. Get over it.