Welcome MEA: America’s Newest Athletic Adventure

With postseason basketball upon us, this seems an appropriate time to consider the announcement of a newly formed professional league to vie for your attention. Move over NBA, and let’s give a hearty applause to the MEA. The MEA was in the process of announcing its primary market yesterday at a press conference when controversy broke out from a leaked audio recording. While initially shocked by the very fact that a new sporting league was already shrouded in controversy, I am quickly coming to the realization that apparently it can’t be a sporting event without some type of controversy. Back to the MEA controversy….

Yesterday, the president of the Monastic Evangelical Association – or MEA, Hermit Benedict, was announcing the need for a growing need for a new and more professional type of monasticism in evangelical life. “We need to refine the art of piety to the heights of superstardom. Then, as children grow up dreaming of becoming their favorite MEA player, we will compete with the NBA, NFL and other sporting franchises for the hearts, minds and physical talents of the phenoms that are around us. The next generation of MEA superstars will bring overwhelming moral and religious commentary on our culture in a single solitary meditation.” Benedict proclaimed. He continued by saying that “while we need superstars, there can be no doubt this is a team event.”

However, contrary to Benedict’s claims, a recording of a private meeting reportedly held a day earlier between owners of MEA teams was leaked. Benedict was quoted in this recording as saying that despite the public mission statement of the MEA (which reads “Committed to promote godliness while simultaneously condemning cultural sins”) the purpose of the MEA is to take attention from the everyday evangelical Christian so they can live their life in unrepentant sin without anyone noticing. He went on to say, “With MEA superstars garnishing the attention we will successfully alleviate any expectation of Joe Christian to live a godly life publicly. After all, we all know that only some of us are really God’s superstars.”

The implications of such an attitude calls into question Benedict’s claims at the initial press release by wondering if the purpose of the MEA is really to call attention to “culturally driven sins”, as Benedict calls them, or if it is really to allow the church to continue in those sins with little accountability.

It was discovered that the person responsible for the leak was a top executive in the MEA, a man by the name of Martin Luther, who is now being call the Benedict Arnold of the league.  While refusing an interview, his advocate released the following statement on his behalf, “It is our belief that all Christians are accountable to God to live a godly life while being a part of their respective cultures. We are told to be both salt and light. Mr. Luther correctly believed that despite the claims of piety that come with any type of monasticism, it is in fact a back door entry to let most Christians go unaccountable as they buy into a pragmatic philosophy of ‘well, I’ll never be [insert MEA superstar name here] so why try.'”

In the swirls of controversy, this reporter was left wondering who exactly is an ideal prospect for the MEA and what demographic would be its likely target. The Press Secretary of the MEA, Ethane Gantry Tho, was glad to give some fast facts about this breakout league. My interview with him follows:

IS: How did you get involved with the MEA?
EGT: I’ve been here since the beginning.
IS: How is this league going to look?
EGT: Like baseball, the MEA will have a farming system. The entry-level league is commonly called “The robe wearing league.” That promises for some interesting games of piety. The second level is the Kibbutz league, where farming is refined to a holy skill with the professional league garnishing the nickname “the Meade League” for obvious reasons. Each team will be from a specific denomination, with interdenominational play being the large makeup of the season’s games.
IS: Where do you expect most of your players to come from?
EGT: Prospects will only be considered from the professional ministry leadership of local churches.
IS: You aren’t accepting laity?
EGT: If you aren’t getting paid now, don’t expect to get paid in the future. And if you are getting paid now, don’t expect to get paid in the future.
IS: You’re smiling as you say this. Why such an emphasis on the clergy?
EGT: Because Christian superstars only come from clergy. It is a known fact. We’re only interested in superstars.
IS: Is there a specific kind of clergy you are looking for?
EGT: Yes, we are only looking for clergy who are currently superstars. These will be men and women who do everything for their church. Their unofficial job description shows them as the teacher, preacher, minister, evangelist, servant, hand maid and butler for everyone else in the church. If a church has anyone else volunteer to do any physical labor other than the clergy than, frankly, he just is not our man (or woman). We especially look for micromanaging churches. They produce the best overall monastic athlete.

The entire interview left me wondering one question. Is your church MEA material?


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