Recently the unofficial newspaper of the Vatican, L’Osservatore Romano, chose an interesting ambassador for the Catholic Church- Homer Simpson. The piece, while tongue in cheek, congratulated The Simpsons on their 20 year anniversary and had this to add:
“The Simpsons are among the few TV programmes for children in which Christian faith, religion, and questions about God are recurrent themes.” The family “recites prayers before meals and, in their own peculiar way, believes in the life thereafter”.
It quoted an analysis by a Jesuit priest, Father Francesco Occhetta, of a 2005 episode of The Simpsons, The Father, the Son and the Holy Guest Star, which revolved around Catholicism and was aired a few weeks after the death of Pope John Paul II….”Few people know it, and he does everything he can to hide it, but it is true: Homer J Simpson is a Catholic,” insists L’Osservatore Romano.
This isn’t the first time that The Simpsons have been used by Christians. A few years ago, Rowan Williams himself recommended the use of a Simpsons-based devotional book for young people.
Since The Simpsons is quickly becoming a bulwark of Christian wisdom, here are some of my favorite quotes from Homer on the topic of religion:
- “Lisa, if the Bible has taught us nothing else — and it hasn’t — it’s that girls should stick to girl’s sports, such as hot oil wrestling and foxy boxing and such and such.”
- “I’m normally not a praying man, but if you’re up there, please save me Superman!”
- “Stealing! How could you? Haven’t you learned anything from that guy who gives those sermons at church? Captain what’s-his-name?”
- “Dear Lord: The gods have been good to me. For the first time in my life, everything is absolutely perfect just the way it is. So here’s the deal: You freeze everything the way it is, and I won’t ask for anything more. If that is OK, please give me absolutely no sign. OK, deal. In gratitude, I present you this offering of cookies and milk. If you want me to eat them for you, give me no sign. Thy will be done.”
- “Save me, Jebus!”