Black Jesus on Velvet by Craig Laurance Gidney

Black Jesus on Velvet by Craig Laurance Gidney

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Craig Laurance Gidney By CraigGidney Updated Oct 15, 2013

I.

And it's Christmas Eve in the church.  Everything has that faintly neon-ethereal blush about it:  the gently red poinsettia, the majestically frosty lily, the fake marble columns.  Candles flicker and writhe.  Shadow drapes the room in holy evilness.  There is a great passionate-yet-passionless red curtain concealing the stage.  Then the people pour in.  They're in their "Sunday Best": Dior, Burberry...  The room reeks of cloying fragrances.  Then, suddenly, every man is seated.  Every flower-print dress falls into place on the pew.  Every cherubic/devilish child has been given a doodle pad.  The preacher mounts the pulpit, and a gradual, but relentless silence descends upon the room.    Every man, woman and child gazes into the void, joyously decorated with holly sprigs, mistletoe, shiny colored balls, and tinsel.  The preacher raises his arms ("praise be to the Lord Jesus," et al) and the red curtain ascends.  Everything's so perfect-so shimmering, so holy, with just the right to...