This is Jesus. He's popular in a few religious circles.

Many Americans across the American country of America feel a deep, spiritual void that cannot be filled by watching televised football or eating those fancy new 3D Doritos. They mindlessly stumble through life as empty shells looking for some unknown guiding force that will give their life meaning. Some people turn to drugs such as heroin or cocaine for their brain-wasting, body-killing, soul-destroying effects. Others turn to religion for its brain-wasting, body-killing, soul-destroying effects. However, all of these perceived "solutions" simply result in draining their victims both mentally and financially, leaving them a withered husk of a human being like in the movie "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" or "Billy Madison." And not the 1970's remake of "Body Snatchers" where Jeff Goldblum and Donald Sutherland ran around downtown San Francisco for 90 minutes and spied on various greenhouses which are now being used as homosexual dance clubs. Although the theme of aliens taking over our bodies and turning us into emotionless zombies doesn't play a major role in most religions (with the exception of Scientology), religious followers desperately seek to avoid suffering the same symptoms. As a child I was forced into religious training by my parents, two people who were firmly convinced that if I failed to attend church every week I would grow up to be a convicted child molester. Well the joke's on them; I've never been convicted! Regardless, my tiresome and repetitious Catholic upbringing simply ended up dulling my senses and turning me away from the path of organized religion, a path that is filled with humongous wooden benches and old white guys who stand on a stage reading from a book for thirteen consecutive hours until his audience is too bored to sin. I moved away from the organized religion scene the moment I hit puberty and my brain decided to have a mind of its own. Now, three days later, I find myself reevaluating this hardball stance on religion. What could possibly cause me to do a complete 180 and spin around like a dreidel rotating on a top which is revolving on a turtle spinning on its back? Here's your answer: the following email.

From: 2217500us-ordination@[email protected]
Subject: BE ORDAINED NOW!

STREET BISHOPS, a U.S. based Ministry, has the authority to make you a LEGALLY ORDAINED CLERGY/MINISTER within 1 week !!!!

BE ORDAINED NOW!

As a member of the CLERGY, you will be authorized to perform the rites and ceremonies of the church!!

Now the Internet is not exactly the most practical form of media for conveying emotion; its users often decide to convey happiness or sadness with a series of ASCII characters that make them look like retards. However, I don't think I need to point out how terribly excited I was when I received this glorious email message today. I felt like a kid in a toy store... only the toy store is full of delicious candy! And it's on Mars! And the kid has X-ray vision. I felt that my calling in life had finally manifested itself in the inbox of my soul, sending bytes of digital hope to the CD burner in my brain and allowing my SCSI drive of my colon to burn a CD-ROM of joy. In other words, I was drunk while writing this.

This is Allah. He doesn't have the charming good looks like that Jesus guy, but people like him anyway.

Fortunately, alcohol couldn't put a damper on the pure ecstasy that I was feeling when I learned I could possibly become a legally ordained "CLERGY/MINISTER." Although I am ashamed to admit it, I have been practicing religion in Washington without a legal license for the past six months. Sometimes I'd go out to Pioneer Square and I'd walk up to people and say, "hey buddy, can I tell you about this way cool Jesus guy?" Then a group of undercover police officers would leap out of the surrounding bushes and trash cans and homeless people's coffee cups to arrest and book me charges of "preaching without a license." I don't think I need to point out how embarrassing it was to be in jail, surrounded by violent trial lawyers and jaywalkers. I had almost given up on religion entirely until I received this thrilling wad of email. Let me go through the rest of the message, explaining how I plan to take advantage of its offers and eventually commit several cases of wire fraud by starting up my own church service named "RELIGION HUT."

WEDDINGS
You can marry relatives, friends, and even earn Part-Time INCOME as couples are searching for a wedding officiate. Most states require that you register your certificate (THAT WE SEND YOU) with the state prior to conducting the ceremony. And we have thousands of inquiries each year requesting ministers all over the country to conduct weddings - we can place you in our database of available officiates! One pastor works full time as a wedding officiate, so can you!

I can't wait to marry people; I think this is an untapped market. However, I don't plan on marrying people in the traditional sense of the word (ie, "willingly"). I and my team of specialized wedding officials will drive through cities in black, unmarked vans (we'll be the ones driving the vans, not the cities), performing "driveby weddings." We'll cruise down streets and spray marriage certificates into houses and through windows, marrying hundreds of people to other humans or pets or furniture in a single night. These wedding certificates will have a special hologram of authenticity, one which explodes in a burst of flaming shrapnel if anybody tries to remove it or cover it up or walk away from it or walk towards it. The only way people can get their marriage annulled will be for them to come to my church and pay me $1,000. Rival churches can grant divorces but they would first have to decipher a secret code I wrote on the bottom of the certificate with invisible ink from an invisible pen that I held in my invisible hand.

FUNERALS
People die every day providing a never-ending need for funeral officiates. Whether its for a friend, family member, or community member, you can fulfill a spiritual as well as community service. Don't settle for a minister you don't know!! Most states require that you register your certificate (THAT WE SEND YOU) with the state prior to conducting the ceremony.

I don't know what this is, but it came up when I did a search for "God," so I suggest you hurry up and start worshipping him.

These guys obviously did their homework. I checked the newspaper and it did confirm that today was, in fact, a day and people did, in fact, die. I immediately began seething with rage as I realized some other chump minister tossed these dead fuckers into the ground and I didn't earn a damn red penny from it! And to think that some people actually have faith in capitalism! With a Ministry certificate from STREET BISHOPS, I could undoubtedly lurch my way into fame and fortune through the lucrative industry of throwing corpses into muddy holes. Here's what I'm going to do: I'll show up at the funeral wearing a robe or tuxedo or wet suit or whatever you're supposed to wear, and start reading random Bible passages in a depressing, monotone voice for nine hours. If I run out of Bible passages, I'll read the copyright. If I run out of copyrights, I'll start reading a Sears catalog and substituting the name of an apostle for the product's name. Then, once I've softened up and dulled the senses of the crowd, I'll begin looting the corpse and prying as much jewelery from its cold, dead fingers as possible. If that doesn't offer any significant riches, I'll forcibly wed one of the funeral attendees to the corpse and offer them a divorce only if they let me pawn their wedding ring.

BAPTISMS
You can say "WELCOME TO THE WORLD!!!! I AM YOUR MINISTER AND YOUR UNCLE!!" What a special way to welcome a child of God. As millions return to church and desire these official ceremonies, you are there to assist them! This adds to your part or full time income as a minister!

Okay, I'm not so hot on this idea. This not only sounds like it requires a load of work but it also seems like I'd be lying to a lot of babies about being their uncle. To top it off, "millions" of people will apparently come back to church and make me assist them in welcoming them back to the world and being their minister and uncle. This will probably be hard to work into my already bloated schedule, although I might be able to wedge it in between reruns of "The Cosby Mysteries." I AM YOUR MINSTER AND YOUR UNCLE, NOW FETCH ME ANOTHER PUDDING POP YOU CRAZY WHITE CHILDREN WHO ARE ALWAYS INEXPLICABLY INHABITING MY KITCHEN!!

PASTORAL COULSELING
Just clergy have for centuries been advisors, you too enjoy limited privileges as a pastoral counselor assisting individuals in their time of need. Of course, forgiveness of Sins is granted to all who ask in sincerity and willingness to change for the better and you can be the one to guide hurting individuals towards healing, love, and God.

I think this would be a huge benefit of filling out their InstaMinister form. A lot of churches out there have some pretty tough policies forgiving certain minority groups in American, namely the serial rapist and child murderer groups. I'd offer these key demographics forgiveness for the low, low price of $9.95 per sin. They don't even have to be sincere. They could walk in, giggling uncontrollably and covered in blood and goat semen, and I'd forgive them as long as they pay $9.95 and pull up to the second window. Then they could come back 20 minutes later with new blood and new goat semen and I would forgive them again as long as they pay with cash or a check card. I'd guide these "hurting individuals" towards healing, love, and God by tattooing Christ's image on their neck and bolting a sign to their skull that says "I WAS SAVED AT RICH 'LOWTAX' KYANKA'S RELIGION HUT AND ALL I GOT WAS THIS LOUSY SIGN."

WANT TO START YOUR OWN CHURCH??
After your LEGAL ORDINATION, you may start your own congregation!!

One of the greatest benefits of forming your own religion is the ability to attract a "congregation" of people, which is a socially acceptable synonym for "cult." Here's what happens: you go to work every day and perform for these people. Then they give you money because they know you don't get paid well at all. A lot of the more enthusiastic members offer to stand up for you and fight for your cause, sometimes even offering to kill people for you, or in particular moments of delusion, actually kill you. So, uh, it's essentially just like running this website, only with a lot less exposure to Goatse.cx.

Suffice to say, I'm really pumped up and excited at the prospect of becoming a legally ordained clergy / minister. I think my ship has finally come in, and this ship is full of "professionally printed 8-inch by 10-inch color certificates." In around a week in a half, this site will be maintained not by Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka, but by Legally Ordained Clergy / Minister Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka. Look for the popup window that will display who you are now married to, as well as a text box where you can enter your 16-digit "marriage annulment code," which is coincidentally your credit card number. God sure works in mysterious and sexy ways!

Even More Mystery!

The always productive and busy K-Dog / Fragmaster / Cakewalk / Little Peanut / Lazy-Ass Niggah / The Cheeser / The Fondler / America's Sweetheart / KevBo has produced the first in a series of "Two Minute Movies." A "series" of course means "one or more," since we're all about as reliable as Windows ME. Today's "Two Minute Movie" is entitled "Murderous Deception" and it will take you through a rollercoaster ride of both murder and deception!

Take a look at all that murder! And deception! Head on over and be deceived for yourself! It's an entire feature length motion picture packed into two minutes or less!

– Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka (@lowtax)

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