Gold Tinsel Jesus does NOT love all

Timothy Kincaid

April 6th, 2015

Tinsel Jesus

Eureka Springs is a little corner of color and decency in Arkansas. Over the years it has developed a gay community and even managed to pass a local domestic partnership registry.

This did not sit well with the religious conservatives. After all, this tourist town was mostly known for it’s Passion Play and it’s giant Jesus statue. This was, in fact, so horrifying that in 2008 the American Family Association whipped up a video warning the world that the radical militant homosexuals had taken over the little town.

And the conservative Christians decided to fight back, taking a page out of the gay community’s playbook. In 2013, they organized a parade, the Celebrate Jesus Easter Parade.

Now I have nothing against Christians celebrating Jesus at the time of the most holy day in the Christian calendar. After all, it must be frustrating that during the Spring Equinox, bunnies and eggs and symbols of fertility seem to give more honor to Ä’ostre than to the Christian festival that borrowed her name.

So for the past three years, Christians have march and waved flags and driven floats, all for this stated purpose:

The focus of this family friendly event is simply to celebrate Jesus, bring unity to the body of Christ and be a visible expression of God’s love in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

And all went just fine for a couple years.

But this year there was a little problem. You see, the local United Methodist Church wanted to join the Parade. And they wanted to carry a banner with a very controversial message: Jesus loves all.

Of course every Christian knows – and often announces – that Jesus loves all. But what the conservatives mean and what the Methodists mean by that are very different things.

The First United Methodist Church of Eureka Springs has recently become a Reconciling Congregation, meaning that gay people were welcome to full inclusion in the church and further that the congregation was committing to civil and religious equality for the LGBT community. So when they say “Jesus loves all”, they mean it without asterisks.

And that was quite the opposite message from what the Celebrate Jesus people wanted to say. They don’t really want to celebrate Jesus – or not, at least, the one who kept droning on and on about treating people the way you want to be treated, and who hung out with sinners, and who blew off tradition and argued with the religious exclusionists. Nope, wrong Jesus.

They want to celebrate Gold Tinsel Jesus. He’s the one who had the decency to shut up and die and not talk about feeding the hungry and caring for those in need. And he most certainly is NOT welcoming of the Homosexuals! Especially not into churches.

So they banned the Methodists from participating. Because the Eureka Springs conservative Christians want you to know that Gold Tinsel Jesus most definitely does not love all.

Paul Douglas

April 7th, 2015

Christianists never cease to amaze me at their obtuseness.

Priya Lynn

April 7th, 2015

Good one, Timothy.


April 7th, 2015

So…how can they ban a congregation from participating if this is a city supported parade. Viewpoint discrimination, much? This is a UMC, for Christ’s sake.


April 7th, 2015

How exquisitely puritanical, a parade so exclusive, even some churches don’t qualify. So, I imagined the Celebrate Jesus Easter Parade would be a solemn procession of vainless drab costumery and bowed heads in quiet observance, shuffling behind a plain wooden cross.

It turns out, it’s gay as all get out on a series of flat bed trucks. I thought that picture of glitter Jesus must’ve been culled for satirical purposes from some blasphemous event down in heathen California. But no, the pious Christian burghers of Eureka Springs really like to camp it up with their saviour.

If only they looked more deeply into their hearts, the organisers would realise there really isn’t that much difference between themselves and the LGBT residents and tourists of the town.

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