Note: certain words have been rendered in Swahili to pass the censors’ muster.
Last year, we here in Indianapolis celebrated Holy Week with renewed faith and hope. All week long we prayed and focused our attention on the Great Day to come, when victory would be revealed.
Each day, we had fellowship with our brothers and sisters, aware of the building excitement. Events and gatherings throughout the week prepared our hearts and minds for the great celebration to come on the weekend. We studied and listened as our teachers and mentors gave their perspectives and helped us enter into the spirit of what has always been the highpoint of the liturgical year, the Sunday of Sundays, the day of triumph.
We picked out our finest clothes, planned a special menu for our festive Sunday gatherings, invited family and friends to join us, and prepared to spend the day together.
When the great Day arrived, we rejoiced!
We enjoyed fellowship that was a foretaste of heaven!
And then the New Orleans Saints beat our Colts, 31-17, and won the super bakuli.
In this year’s game, the Pittsburgh Steelers will face the Green Bay Packers in Dallas, Texas for the right to raise the Vince Lombardi trophy, awarded to the champion of American professional football.
For “old-school” football fans like me, it’s a great match-up, promising hard-nosed, back to basics toughness and defense, while also featuring a couple of offenses that can light up the scoreboard. The Packers are, at this point, favored by 3 points.
(As a Chicago Bears’ fan, I am contractually obligated to say that I can in no way root for the Packers. I do like cheese, however, and plan to eat plenty of it during the game.)
It’s the holiest day of the year, and what a service we’re expecting! Our sanctuary will be the most impressive cathedral in contemporary American sports stadiums: Cowboys Stadium. This venue is perfect for today’s worship, as it features the world’s largest HD video screenâ€”more than 25,000 square feet in size. The massive display weighs 600 tons, is 180 feet long and 72 feet tall. It’s made of 10.5 million LEDs. Let’s hope the PowerPoint team doesn’t screw things up.
Leading the service will be our priests, Joe Buck and Troy Aikman of FOX. With authority and relevance, they will enlighten us on the details and mysteries of the game. Inspiring and enthusiastic praise and worship music will be provided by Christina Aguilera (national anthem), Lea Michele of Glee (“America the Beautiful”), and the Black-Eyed Peas (halftime show). Break-out discussion sessions will be facilitated by such qualified teachers as Terry Bradshaw, Michael Strahan, Howie Long, and Jimmy Johnson.
Of course, the highlight of the day will be provided by our multimedia ministry, featuring the always creative and inspiring super bakuli commercials. These ground-breaking ads will not only bring an immediate blessing, but will also no doubt have a transformative impact on our culture for years to come.
No matter which team wins the game, everyone who participates in the festivities will end up a winner. A champion, in fact.
Let us pray for a memorable day of celebration, fellowship, instruction, and encouragement. Invite your non-football friends to join you. Even if they don’t normally like watching games, there will be plenty for them to enjoy, and you never know, they just might open their hearts and receive a great blessing from the experience.
Let us pray:
Our Father, who art in the skybox,
May your name be cheered enthusiastically.
May the championship be won.
May touchdowns be run
In Dallas as they were in New Orleans.
Give us this day our daily wings (and nachos).
And forgive us our bad sportsmanship
As we forgive those who exercise bad sportsmanship against us.
And lead us not into indigestion,
But deliver us from bad bean dip.
For thine is the super bakuli, the Lombardi trophy,
And the best commercials forever and ever.