Saturday, June 14, 2008

the ironies of christian education III

Part III: Embracing the world's success culture.

To be a successful college, it must produce successful students. And that success is always defined by what the world around that college defines as “success”.

Both “success” and “failure” can be defined a number of different ways. And probably none of the definitions are wrong. Who knows.

But I’ve always wanted to know how Jesus’ words “the first shall be last, the last shall be first” fits into our success-driven christian education system and its parent host, the christian subculture.

In the alumni magazine for my former university, which I reluctantly receive in the mail every so often, it spotlights those former students who are leaders in their arenas of life and so-forth. And it would be a dichotomy to spotlight former students who had a moral blemish, personal failure, or even chose to hide their good acts from men. Thus, the unrealistic expectation of the christian culture upon its people generates the inevitable hypocrisy label on christians who “stumble and fall”. The culture holds unrealistic expectations on its people, thus they must save face and play along.

I have no answers or solutions to this, except maybe to have my contact information deleted from my alumni university and hope to fade away into relative obscurity. I would never want to be their poster child for successful alumni anyway.

So like usual, the only practical outlet I have is sarcasm. I wrote this comedy piece of things you would never find in the alumni magazine:

Top 10 listings you won't find in the Alumni University's 'Exxperiences' section:

10) Education Graduate [student name here] currently works as the principal of Jackson Elementary in downtown Denver, CO and was recently placed on administrative leave after her creation of the 'Beat and Don't Tell' program.

9) Successful dance choreographer [student name here] has choreographed several well-known Broadway musicals. In addition to staging a few MTV award ceremonies she has recently choreographed a Super Bowl Halftime show featuring the sister of M. Jackson.

8) Piano performance major [student name here] has recently taken a job playing Scott Joplin's 'The Entertainer' ad nausium through a nasally sounding bull horn while driving an ice cream truck as he tries to pay off "these damn student loans".

7) [student name here] is the founder of 'The Rainbow Alliance Court of His and Her Most Highness' in Portland, OR. If you have to ask you don't want to know.

6) [student name here] of Ogden, UT was recently married. His first, second and third wives approve of their new family member.

5) [student name here] has recently been nominated 'Inmate of the month' by Leavenworth, KS prison authorities.

4) [student name here], class of 1991, lives in his parent's basement and is the manager of 'Intergalactic Trading Cards, Comics and Collectables' which recently hosted an autograph session with Jeremy Bulloch (you know, Boba Fett from 'Star Wars' fame??). He has yet to kiss a girl.

3) [student name here] is the president of Wells Fargo Bank's Ft. Worth division, serves on the board for Habitat for Humanity and a local homeless mission, has a beautiful wife, 4 excellent kids, lives in a big house, drives a late model SUV, involved in several high yield investments that you probably wouldn't know anything about, and is an all around bad ass.

2) Bible graduate [student name here] has created his own church, The Ascension of the Blessed Holy Moly Cosmos of Greater Awakenings, located in the isolated foothills near Ft. Davis, TX. All are welcome, especially if you are young, female and directionless.

1) [AGENT B] is trying to fade away into relative obscurity. Please leave him the hell alone.

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