Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Gospel According to Gretchen

My natural father and I found each other through International Soundex Reunion Registry (ISRR) in 1998. During the first year of our reunion, I was inspired to write the following satire which chronicles our experience with Catholic Charities of Fairfield County in Connecticut.


 
Mary and Joseph weren’t married. Joseph wasn’t Jesus’ natural father. So you have to wonder—what would happen if God the Supreme Ruler of the Universe (and natural father) went to Catholic Charities requesting information on his son.


The year is 1999. The place is Catholic Charities of Greater Bethlehem.

God:
Hi, my name is God the Supreme Ruler of the Universe. About 2000 years ago, I fathered a son. I believe he was born sometime in December. I would like to find out what happened to him and make myself available should he have any questions.

Catholic Charities:
How much money do you have on you God? Because for a mere $1 million “donation” to Catholic Charities, you can sign a useless piece of paper with all of your information on it that we have no intention of giving to your son should he contact us.

God:
Well, that sounds like a good deal. Let me get out my checkbook. Can you tell me anything about my son?

Catholic Charities:
Oh, I’m sorry God. There is a chance that your son may have given up his life for the good of mankind, but I’m not permitted by law to reveal that sort of information. But don’t worry, you can just leave everything to me.

God:
Okay, sounds great.

MEANWHILE…

Jesus:
Hi, my name is Jesus. I was born 2000 years ago on December 25 in Bethlehem. I have re-risen from the dead with the sole purpose of searching out my natural father. Can you help me?

Catholic Charities:
Well, Jesus, we here at Catholic Charities will do everything we can to help. How much money do you have on you?

Jesus:
Uh, some years ago, I gave up my life for the good of mankind. Prior to that, I lived a simple existence performing good deeds and miracles. Needless to say, my cash flow is minimal.

Catholic Charities:
Hmmmm. I see Jesus. No problem. We can put you on our installment plan. Once your first monthly check clears, I will journey all the way to the next room, open up the file cabinet and pull your file. Then I will copy and send to you five sheets of paper that contain vital medical information gathered 2000 years ago that basically serves no purpose as it has never been updated.

Jesus:
Wow, that sounds great. But how will that information help me find my natural father?

Catholic Charities:
It won’t, Jesus. But hopefully that information will pacify you enough so that you won’t bug the crap out of us anymore with this find-your-father thing. Although, there is an alternative. With a slight increase in your monthly payments, I will conduct the search for you because, at 2000 years of age, you are too stupid to make decisions pertaining to your own life.

Jesus:
Okay, that sounds terrific. So when you find him, you will forward the information so that I can contact him?

Catholic Charities:
No. You cannot be trusted enough to contact your own father because it might disrupt his life. It is, however, completely acceptable for us, the Almighty Catholic Charities, to disrupt his life on your behalf.

Jesus:
Okay, that sounds great. Sign me up.

Fortunately, God and Jesus were able to find each other thanks to the Greater Bethlehem Mutual Reunion Registry and without the assistance of Catholic Charities

Julie Stromberg
When the time came to think about college, I decided that my career path would encompass either child psychology or journalism. Fortunately for all the young people out there, I opted for journalism and earned a bachelor's degree in communications. Since that time, I have worked as a newspaper and magazine staff writer, public relations associate, and marketing copywriter. My professional creative efforts have been acknowledged with several industry awards.

I am also pleased to be involved in several writing and advocacy projects outside of the office. As an adoptee, my advocacy work is focused on changing the common, societal discourse on adoption practices and encouraging reform that would place the emotional needs and legal rights of the children involved first. www.juliegmstromberg.com

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