Ashes as ammo? It's time for Bad Burrito Awards - Word&Way

Ashes as ammo? It’s time for Bad Burrito Awards

Like church business meetings? Me, too. However, spontaneous motions from the floor can liven up the dullest of these sessions. There’s something about having the floor that makes people say unpredictable things. For example, several years ago, a messenger to a state Baptist meeting nominated Jesus as convention president. (After a few awkward moments, he was ruled ineligible.)

Ken SatterfieldKen SatterfieldI have a gut feeling that many motions are the result of the combination of eating a burrito, indigestion and middle-of-the-night ideas that should never see daylight.

Likewise, the seventh annual Bad Burrito Awards spotlight dubious accomplishments to promote and market Christianity.

Good grief. What happens after you die? Jesus said your soul can be with him eternally, but the good folks at Holy Smoke allow your remains to be the last thing a turkey sees “screaming at him at about 900 feet per second” — as bullets packed with your ashes. And of course all the shells or bullets are packed by Christians with good moral values. An idea like that deserves a burrito!

You may not have the wealth or influence to be packed into a can of Pringles (like can inventor Fredric J. Baur), shot into space (Timothy Leary and Star Trek’s Gene Roddenberry via a space shuttle), included in Frisbees (Wham-O Manager Edward Headrick) or incorporated into comic book ink (like Editor Mark Gruenwald). And you may not have the nerve (hopefully) to ask be smoked like rapper Tupac Shakur, or snorted as the Rolling Stones’ Keith Richards claims to have done with his father’s ashes.

Burritos also are awarded to similar options — pressed into a vinyl record (And Vinyly), in tattoos (check locally), melted into a diamond (LifeGem), incorporated into your memorial portrait (Art in Ashes or Memories from Ashes), stained glass (Scattering Ashes), sculptures and keepsakes (Memorials), coral reef (Eternal Reefs) or shot into orbit (Celestis).

RIP, please hold. Remember last year’s winner, a telephone-themed spray with the message, “Jesus called”? This year, it’s a gravestone with the image of a woman happily chatting on a cordless phone. Underneath is the simple statement, “Jesus called and Kim answered.” A commenter said it best, “Note to self: Screen ALL calls from now on.” Not-so-comforting comfort deserves a burrito.

9/11 memories. On the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, a really big burrito goes to artist Fran Lagana-Brooks for a 2002 painting in his “Weeping Santa” series. This one has an angel monument with a 9/11 sign in the background behind the scene of Jesus embracing a weeping Santa Claus.

Politics in Scripture. While tongue-in-cheek use of Scripture may be amusing (the supposed single woman’s prayer in Psalm 56:1 comes to mind), misuse for political gain isn’t. So should and win a burrito for announcing they would no longer carry “Pray for Obama” merchandise after a Rachel Maddow television segment? No, the opposite. The merchandise carried a Psalm 109:8 reference, “May his days be few; may another take his place of leadership,” which both companies felt could suggest physical harm, especially when the psalm asks that the leader die and his children become beggars.

Clothing miscues. This year’s Bad Burrito for poor choice in t-shirt theology goes to bootahead for a hot pepper on a t-shirt with “Jesus. Banana peppers. Both hot. Both spicy. Both something you want.” Second place goes to Cool Faith for “I’m CooCoo for Christ” pictured with the actual General Mills’ cereal bird logo.

This burrito smells. Fragrances can make you think of many things — flowers, leather, trees, the Pope. Yes, Excelsis announced they created a new fragrance in honor of Pope Benedict XVI and the 60th anniversary of his ordination into the priesthood. Pope perfume, have a burrito.

Jewelry gyp. A catalog from the folks at Dream Products advertises something bringing together “the most powerful forces of heaven and Earth.” It’s a copper bracelet stamped with Jesus’ name, combining the soothing power of copper with the healing power of Jesus. I’d prefer to order them a burrito.

Holiday hijinks. I like holidays and don’t feel I have to mention Jesus for God to be able to use them for building relationships or church outreach. So a trio of burritos goes to JesusWeen, a Christian festival to compete with Halloween; Joshua Edmonds, an Atlanta-area senior minister of Project:Ignite, who handed out fetus dolls as Halloween treats to children; and to Oriental Trading, for its “Jesus: Hang Your Hope on Him” products to spice up Christmas, including stockings, ornaments, kick balls and tattoos.

There are always many ways to share your faith. I encourage you to look for ways that are a blessing rather than a curiosity.

Ken Satterfield is Word&Way’s advertising and marketing coordinator. He welcomes your product suggestions. By the way, inclusion in this article does not constitute an endorsement. 

Past Bad Burrito columns:

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