There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
These words are not attributed to Jesus but according to the New Testament he certainly encouraged the rich to give all their wealth to the poor and told the press gallery of the time that it was easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter through the Gate of Heaven, and didn't he make a mess of the merchants' market at the temple? Yep. This Jesus dude was a card carrying member of the communist party if ever there was one. Or at least he would be today.
It has to be one of humanity's greatest ironies. Modern communists deride organised religion as elitist - just another way of controlling the proles, and they have a point given their hierarchical make-up and the fact that the Roman Catholic church and many other churches have more money and power than they knows what to do with. In fact Cardinal Pell - the Aussie charged with the task of sorting out the Vatican's finances - has just discovered millions of euros tucked away in bank accounts that nobody knew about. Millions of Euros! You know you've got too much money when you can lose millions of Euros and not even know you had it in the first place.
On the other hand, if Mr J Christ was to be delivered in a grotty motel today, the son of a tradesman and a rather naive young woman (I was visited by an angel and now I'm pregnant.) The first group of people to persecute and denigrate him would be the bible-thumpers of this world who have absolutely no intention of giving away their worldly goods to the poor and who generally think of communists as being the spawn of Satan himself. Mainly because they associate communism with the Cold War - Brezhnev, Honecker, Ceaușescu and their ilk. They weren't communists at all of course. They wouldn't know one if he kicked their hammer and sickle tattooed butts, They were just as elitist as their capitalist counterparts - just more brutal. So poor old J.C. would get it in the neck from both sides, just as he did two thousand years ago from both the Romans and the Jews. In other words, if you happen to be a Messiah or are thinking of becoming one, do it quietly and without preaching equality, or telling humans to give away their money to the poor. It will only get you into trouble.
These days my staff tend not to make a big fuss at Christmas. They don't have a tree or any other decorations. They sent out "Seasons Greetings" cards like everyone else, and like everyone else, every year they're dismayed when they receive a card from someone they've forgotten to send one to.
They have an arrangement with each other and their families not to give gifts and they have no children to wake them up at four 'o' clock on Christmas morning - only guinea pigs who start shouting for their breakfast as soon as it's light no matter what day it is. Their Christmas lunch is usually salad (which suited me just fine) and little nibbly things, dips and a bottle of good chilled white wine. December in Queensland is way too hot and steamy for roast turkey, stuffing, chipolatas wrapped in bacon, roast potatoes, Brussels sprouts. baked parsnips and gravy so thick you have to slice it, followed by a lump of Christmas pudding the size of a small car and a bucket of brandy custard. Imagine having to cook that lot when it's ninety degrees Fahrenheit and ninety percent humidity. Nevertheless many people still do it. Well I suppose all the weight you lose sweating over the oven would be regained (plus a bit) when you consume your lunch.
My staff's one concession to Christmas is their annual guinea pig nativity play. I'll tell you about it but you have to bear in mind that my staff's grip of the events of two thousand and fifteen years ago is as tenuous as their grip on sanity. One of my male staff's early nativity drawings, done as a Sunday school project featured a helicopter hovering over Jesus' stable instead of a star. Not only that, but it was being shot at by a Messerschmitt 109, presumably piloted by King Herod himself.
Before I went to Piggy Paradise earlier this year I always played the part of Joseph and when my little pal Badger was still with us he played the part of the innkeeper. Mary was my female staff's old teddy bear - Jimmy and baby Jesus was played by a carrot, wrapped in swaddling lettuce and laid in a manger made of half a capsicum. Paolo the budgie was the Angel Gabriel because he was the only one who could fly. The shepherds watching their flock by night all seated on the ground were portrayed by my staff's collection of African Ndebele dolls and their flock was mostly china elephants with the occasional leadwood hippo thrown in to make up the numbers.
Unfortunately last year The Angel Gabriel told the shepherds to "Be not afraid" and then crapped on them so I doubt that Paolo will get the role this year. In any case the family nativity play usually goes pear shaped well before the end. Two years ago for example when the innkeeper (played by Badger) told Joseph (played by yours truly) that there was no room at the inn but that he and Mary could use the stable (Badger's cage), Joseph mounted him. Well, I couldn't help it, he just looked so cute in his little costume and the production's director (my male staff) told me that I should display gratitude to the kindly innkeeper. Then once Joseph and Mary had settled into the stable and baby Jesus had been safely delivered and laid tenderly in his half capsicum manger the innkeeper ate the Messiah and his swaddling lettuce at which point Joseph (me) decided that if he didn't make a move quickly the innkeeper would probably consume the manger too, leaving him (me) with nothing but a bit of boring hay and one of Mary's arms to chew on.
Starring Badger as the Innkeeper.
Anyway, I'm looking forward to this year's production. Baci being the smallest will be playing the baby Jesus. Tom will play Joseph. Alfie has scored the role of the innkeeper and Toby will play the role of all three wise men, he's big enough and anyway, this being Queensland my staff couldn't find another two.
Uncal Billy has got me wurried now. I don't want to be Jeezus if it meens I get eetun by the innkeeper. I think I'll ask Uncal Billy's staff if I can be the hellykopta pylet instead. That way I can stay owt of trubbel. I'd feel much better if Jeezus was a karrit again this yeer.