Lent madness

My blogging friend Fr. Tim Schenck is a (possibly diabolical) genius. He’s running a little scheme over at his blog that simultaneously cashes in on three cultural crazes: Lent, sports, and gambling. His “Lent Madness” consists of a bunch of saints arranged into a basketball-like bracket. Readers of Tim’s blog can vote for their favorite saint as they compete with one another, working their way up to the Final Four and ultimately to the Golden Halo.

Got that? It’s like sports in that it’s competitive and it’s a single elimination championship series. It’s got Lent in that it’s a bunch of holy people during, um, Lent. And while Tim is too clever to be open about it, you know he’s running some kind of bookie scheme in the proverbial back room. I noticed he’s searching for a curate now. Is it a coincidence his parish suddenly has the money for a second priest when their rector is running a Lenten sanctoral smackdown?

I haven’t written about it before because it was the first round. As a confirmed fair weather sports fan — who gets interested in the Red Sox if they’re doing well in mid-September — I can’t be bothered with first round anything. Now that the first round is nearly complete, I urge you to check out Tim’s blog. Vote early and vote often!

Here’s another thing. And this is an important thing. George Herbert is in the running. While not everyone likes him, he’s a bit of a favorite of mine. You can tell by the name of this blog. So when George comes up in the second round, taking on Joseph, I’m going to be asking you to bombard Tim’s blog and bury him in votes for George Herbert.

At this moment, I’m trying to decide how I can layer political pork or special interests onto Tim’s scheme. In venerable American tradition, I’m declaring that I want to see Herbert prevail. I’ll be invoking some Chicago-style “voter registration” campaigns. Perhaps I’ll start teaching everyone about purgatory and promising a reduction in years spent there for every Herbert vote. Whatever it takes…

By the way, on a more serious note, St. John’s seems like a pretty great parish and I think the world of Tim. If you know any great priests, or if you are a priest in search of a new cure, give consideration to the opening there. I have no doubt it would be a pleasure to serve with Tim, even if he is one of those insufferably trendy blogging priests. Now, please excuse me while I go check Facebook and then write the next blog entry.

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