Religion TV Style


I was surfing on the Television the other day, I stopped to listen to the spiel being doled out by one of the religious channels that come with the ‘Sky Australasian’ feed. A particular preacher seemed to have only one aim, and that was to solicit and extract as much money that he could from the Church’s TV. Adherents, or just the plain gullible. It didn’t matter where they were in he world. Any currency was acceptable, and credit cards accepted. We are talking about large sums too, $500, $1,000. This crowd doesn’t muck about. They were in my mind only one notch above professional confident experts. If the authorities were doing their job, they all should be shoved into the slammer.


The Television Churches of the Air Waves are all blatantly soliciting one thing, Money. Using every ploy they know of to extract even more money required to carry out Gods work, well some of it. This was not the only channel at this caper. They have been around for a long time, but in a different mediums. They know too when they are onto a good thing. I can remember an Aunt telling me about a family problem when I was a very small boy. At this time my Grandmother was loosing her grip on life, becoming senile, and easily manipulated. She had always been a very religious person, and a regular Church attendee. But in her latter years she was attracted more and more towards the fringe Churches. Those in charge of these institutions soon recognised her as a pigeon, ready for plucking. They were quick to exploit this and constantly fussed over the old dear. One particular group was always visiting her looking for the large donations she was known to give.


However at Church on one occasion when the collection plate came around after she had been softened up, Grandma nonchalantly tossed a substantial roll of bank notes onto the plate. When it passed by Auntie Laurie, she quickly fished out the family money, muttering it was a mistake. Today they are just as great in creating an atmosphere. You have to hand it to them in that they do give a slick and polished service, or performance that would put any genuine mainline Church to shame. They field large choirs, and a huge organ, and even a twenty or thirty piece orchestra. But the one thing they are not shy about, and that’s soliciting contributions. I didn’t have look too hard to find several others all working my section of the Air Waves. They pretend they are respectable organisations, but for my book they are about on a par with the ‘Fly by night’ roof painters and double glazers. I know about double glazing from personal experience. I’ll concede they have made great strides in cleaning their act up, but that doesn’t get me back the $12,000 I had to pay out to replace the windows in my home that went mouldy in their internal air space. They were under guarantee too, but who do you seek recompense from when the firm involved has been declared bankrupt.


Anyway back to the religious pan handlers who are preying on the weak and gullible, and there are plenty of people out there who really believe that by handing over large sums of money, they will perhaps be given favourable treatment when they reach the promised land to begin their ‘after life’. These people are no different than the con artists from Nigeria who bombard us with mail advising that a relative has died intestate. Would you believe there are several million dollars being held in trust for me should I wish to become a claimant. All I have to do, is send some up front money to help with bribes, and the necessary expenses. Then I will soon be in receipt of umpteen millions. What a lot of careless relatives I have had (About a dozen in the last count). You would think that no one, would fall for such a transparent fraudulent scheme such as this. As they say, aided by greed, there is a sucker born every minute.


The Churches in general can breathe a little easier now as Richard Dawkins who some have named the anti Christ, has moved on. He spoke to several packed houses in his talks that he gave in New Zealand, even in little Christchurch. Not cheap either, at $135 a seat, telling us what we should already know. I too am confused about life. I certainly don’t believe in many of the traditional religious stories I was fed over my formative years. But I still get a feeling of guilt and that I’m doing wrong, should I pause to think about it about many of my activities. For example, even not observing Sunday as a day of rest. Having said that, I don’t believe in Creationism, but I am happy with Evolution, the facts are there for all to see. However I can’t come to grips with the fact that we are living on a small benevolent grain of sand alongside a ten mile Beach of sand. The more we discover about our environment the more puzzling it all becomes. We reach out into space, only to find that there are billions of like stars. It’s hard not to believe that something has had a hand in providing us with this thing of wonder we call Earth. The right temperature range, the fact that in most places sufficient water, or even the air we breathe. So much to wonder about. Is there another similar planet out there? There are possibly hundreds, even thousands. It matters not, for we will never have the means of having the ability to communicate, let alone make a visit. The distances are just too great, you wouldn’t live long enough to make any journey.


All I can say and that is. Be content with your lot, and play the hand you have been dealt.







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