There is a famous televangelist, who’s name you’ve never heard of, trying to raise 54 million dollars so he can buy a new private jet to continue the work of spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ throughout the world. If he gets the money, this will be good news–for him. Another TV preacher, Kenneth Copeland, is buying a used private jet and laying out almost six million in cash (it pays to shop) plus plowing two and a half mil into the plane in upgrades WITH a 17 million dollar hangar, so the jet will have a nice place to sleep. The Poor Polish Priest Fund, of which I am the sole beneficiary, now has a total of seven cents in the bank (thank you anonymous parishioner).
On a much smaller end of the evangelical spectrum, one of my parishes is trying to raise 70 grand to build a new handicap access ramp and restroom. It’s not the flashy project of spreading the Gospel with jet fumes, but it answers a need for parishioners with mobility issues. Permission of this parish project came from our bishop, the money will come from the people. TV preachers, knowing how to work the system, jump the chain of command and go straight to the Lord.
“My Heavenly Savior, what wouldst thou have your lowly, humble servant do to spread Thy Word to all the world?” Jesus: “Go ye therefore and buy the latest, fastest, extended range Dassault Falcon 7X jet money can buy.” Preacher: “But how will I pay for such a vast undertaking my Savior when my ministry bringeth forth only seven figures for your unpretentious follower?” Jesus: “Go thee to thine people; shake them down, fleece the flock, make them cough it up and soar unto the ends of the earth!”
One thing is certain, these ministers of the airwave medium will be the wealthiest pastors in the cemetery. Now, I’m not great at asking people for money, whether for a palace or a pittance. It’s like asking someone for their blood; and some people act like you’ve just asked for their blood when seeking a donation. Some give freely of that earned by their blood and sweat, others would rather spend your blood and sweat than their own.
Thankfully, the Lord Jesus spent His Body and Blood on us; freely given, eternal and without limits. This gift nourishes us and prepares us for eternal life. With the Eucharist we soar in the Spirit.