Momma Don’t Let the Baptists Pray Over My Dead Body…err bones

From Scout:

Yesterday a body was found in New Orleans by the NO Fire Dept search team. Last Wednesday another body was found by members of Victim Relief Ministries after they had been contacted by relatives to search a specific address.(post here) Victim Relief Ministries has been on hand in the past when Katrina victims were belatedly found to read a prayer over the victim.

Before I get to my point here is some background on Victim Relief Ministries (VRM).

Victim Relief Ministries is a mission of Texas Baptist Men (TBM). TBM partners with the North American Mission Board (NAMB) which is the domestic missions agency of the Southern Baptist Convention. Here is NAMB‘s vision statement

Specifically, we do this by focusing on six major objectives that also form the basis for how this Web site is structured: sharing Christ, starting churches, volunteering in missions, sending missionaries, impacting the culture and equipping leaders. The end goal is reflected in our vision statement:

“We see a day when every person in every community in the United States and Canada will have the opportunity to hear the gospel, respond with faith in Christ, and participate in a New Testament fellowship of believers.

The Baptists role in disaster relief has been growing over the years. There is a generally accepted belief that when the government response to Katrina failed the faith based groups stepped in after the fact and succeeded where the government did not. Yet the Baptist’s role had been growing more defined over time PRIOR to Katrina. In fact they are the third largest disaster relief organization in the US behind the Red Cross and Salvation Army. It has been these 3 organizations that are called by state officials and FEMA when a disaster strikes. To demonstrate further their expanding role, in August 2004, the executive director of Victim Relief Ministries announced that the Department of Homeland Security had “given the non-profit group the “lead role” in in mobilizing the faith community following a large tragedy.”

Katrina was a big moment for faith based missions. The Gulf Coast post-Katrina has been a veritable Petri dish for Bush’s faith based initiative. It has been a demonstration of a shift from government providing disaster relief to church missions doing so. Whether that was planned, or by failure of the government, can be argued but the result has been the same.

As an American citizen I’ve got a problem with that. Simply put……Should disaster befall me I don‘t want the Texas Baptists praying over my dead body, or in the case it takes 9 months to find me, make that my bones.And I’ve found a personal solution at least.

(Click Read More)

From Scout:

I can understand families reaching out to anyone who would help them locate the body of a family member. I can only imagine what it must be like to wait 9 months for word of where their loved one is. I come from a close family and I know if I were missing my family would be moving heaven and earth to find me. Of course they would be contacting the government as they are of the old belief that well that would be a function of government. My fear, what sends shudders through my body, is the thought that in time they would reach out to the Baptists.

I can only imagine the type of prayer the Baptists would say if they were to find my bones amidst the wreckage of my home with my unpatriotic, liberal, pro gay, Bush bashing cd’s and books….

books cd

Heaven forbid a sex toy came to rest near my decomposing remains. I can just hear the “prayer“…..

Dear heavenly father we pray in in the name of your son Jesus Christ our one true saviour for this poor soul who renounced living a God-honoring life instead chosing to promulgate a deviant lifestyle. We pray this sinner did know the darkness in their heart in their final moments and renounced Satan and all their sins so they may glory now in your presence in heaven and save their soul from everlasting hell and damnation. We pray in your name Amen.

Uh Uh. Nope. Sorry. I don’t Want No Stinking Baptist ministers praying over me come the end. I disagree with everything for which they stand. A person has to take a stand in defense of America and its long held belief of separation of church and state somewhere in their life even if it is at the very end. So I decided to amend my living will and make my wishes known now and also protect my family from a possible unnecessary grief…..

Section III (a)

In the event I fall victim to a disaster, natural or that caused once again by government neglect of it’s responsibilities

If the Federal government once again fails to respond to the needs of its citizens at a time of disaster, in which I am believed to be a victim, I hereby request my family do not take extraordinary measures to find my decaying remains by calling upon the aid or resources of the Texas Baptists, or other state Baptists, or any fundamentalist religious organization. If this is truly the best America can do, if the federal government will not take extraordinary means to recover its dead, if they pass it off onto over-burdened state and local agencies or use faith based organizations to erode and debase a once effective government, if this is the best that the world’s “greatest nation” can do, and there is a still continuing dearth of moral outrage from it citizenry in regard to this, …..then Mom it’s OK, I’ll wait. This is my final wish and I ask my family take comfort in knowing they are acceding to such wishes rather than fall victim to grief, guilt or despair at not having provided a decent burial. I ask that instead they commemorate my life with an Irish wake to be held at McGovern’s Tavern, should it still exist, at a time convenient to all.

Maybe I’ll be able to remove this amendment in 2009.