- Perhaps it’s the Baby Moses boat races.
- Or the Sunday the children decorated their own John the Baptist styrofoam wig heads.
- It could be the music we sing, everything from Pete Seeger, Billy Bragg and Bruce Springsteen to the Indigo Girls, Steve Earle, Dan Zanes, and even Green Day.
- It might be our performance of “Nacho Jacob,” safe to say the first theatrical production in history to combine Jacob with Morley Safer and Jack Black, complete with luchador wrestling masks. As the joke goes, Judson Sunday School is “nacho” typical Sunday School.
Our families are diverse: Some parents are single, some coupled. Some couples are in same gender relationships and identify as gay; others are in different gender relationships and identify as straight. Some parents have strong church backgrounds while some have no church experience whatsoever. Some of our families are multi-racial, and some not.
What we have in common is the desire for our kids to receive a progressive church education. At Judson Sunday School, the emphasis is on the truth within a Bible story rather than the truth of a Bible story, and our lessons stress the great themes found within religion, such as love, justice, peace and forgiveness.
Childcare: Our classes meet during the church worship hour, yet we are vigilant in providing opportunities for our children to participate in the worship service. We also provide childcare for congregational meetings and many other special events.
Judson Sunday School: a bit weird, wonderful, insightful, delightful, safe, but mostly, a lot of fun!
When the muse calls him, Judson's Sunday School director Andy Frantz (The Grand Poobah!) provides insights, mild rants, celebrations of the absurd, critical raves, modern philosophies and much more.
Read This Week at Judson's Sunday School below and feel free to send your comments, questions, jokes to the Grand Poobah himself: JudsonGrandPoobah (at) gmail.com
Welcome back to Sunday School, Judson Mamas and Papas!
Well, I guess it was inevitable, wasn’t it? We should have known the presidency was never going to be enough for the Donald. So it should have come as no surprise when earlier today, Donald Trump announced that he was giving up his bid for the White House in order that he might concentrate on a higher calling, his new campaign to become God. Not long after his announcement, Mr. Trump dropped by my office for an interview.
Grand Poobah: First of all, why God?
Donald Trump: Why not? I will be a great God, believe me.
GP: But we already have a God.
DT: Look, let’s face facts, the old God is a loser. He’s just some spooky voice coming out of a campfire. There’s always too much mystery with that guy. And what’s with the “I am that I am” business? Who does he think he is, Popeye?
People need a God they can understand, a God they can relate to. It’s a question of branding, and my brand is as hot as it gets. People know what they’re getting with me. You take my Trump fragrance, “Success by Trump.” What are you getting? The smell of a winner, baby!
GP: No offense, but there are a lot of religious figures in the world that come to mind before you.
DT: Like who?
GP: Well, Moses, for one.
DT: Moses was a moron. I’m sorry, but it’s a fact. The guy never even made it to the Promised Land. I like guys who make it to the Promised Land. Take the Ten Commandments. Never ever, ever in my life have I seen any transaction so incompetently negotiated as that deal. If I had been on Mount Sinai, we’d have had four commandments, tops. I didn’t write The Art of the Deal for nothing.
GP: What about Jesus?
DT: That hippie? You want to be God, buy yourself a suit, for crying out loud. And lose the sandals.
How many followers did Jesus have, twelve? Have you checked out my Twitter account lately? I am blowing up, as the kids say these days. You want to know why? Because I understand people. Jesus didn’t understand people. Blessed are the poor? Please. Blessed are the rich! The point is you can never be too greedy. When I’m God, there’ll be no more tithing, no more pledges. You know why? Because I don’t need the money. The beauty of me is that I’m very rich!
GP: Didn’t Jesus once say, “It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God”?
DT: I have no idea what that means. But I do know I am rich enough to buy the kingdom of God, the entire kingdom. And I’ll expand it, maybe add some golf courses, make it better than ever. It will be spectacular!
GP: Jesus had more to say than just admonishing the rich. What about “The Good Samaritan” and loving your neighbor?
DT: Jesus missed the whole point of that story. “The Good Samaritan” isn’t about loving your neighbor, it’s about securing our borders. Sure there are “good” Samaritans, but there are a lot of “bad” Samaritans as well. That’s why the Priest and the Levite were too afraid to help, the road to Jericho was in a high crime neighborhood. What Judea needed wasn’t a good Samaritan but a good wall. And I can say that because the Samaritans love me.
GP: Let’s move on. How do you feel about Buddha?
DT: Let’s face it, the guy is fat. Buddha let himself go.
GP: Are there any religious figures you do like?
DT: Joan of Arc. Joan was hot! You know, all the women on The Apprentice flirted with me – consciously or unconsciously. That’s to be expected.
GP: How do you feel about other religions? Islam? Hinduism? Sikhism?
DT: Sikhism? Nobody is ever going to follow anyone wearing a turban. I’m sorry, but it’s just a fact.
GP: Okay, I think we are just about done here.
DT: Did I mention that my I.Q. is one of the highest – and you all know it!
GP: We’re done.
Judson Sunday School is back in session, boys and goils, and just between you and me, I think we’ll stick with the old God. What’s in store for your children this year? We’re offering two classes: For the young’uns, “Love Surrounds Us,” lessons which emphasize the importance of love in our communities of family, school and neighborhood. For the higher elementals and middling kids, “A Joyful Path,” a progressive curriculum endorsed by none other than Bishop John Shelby Spong as a “curriculum for children that does not equate faith with having a pre-modern mind.”
The Poohbettes - Lulu, Lottie, Rachel R., Mac and Ezra – are back, as am I, speaking of pre-modern minds, for my 23rd year as Grand Poobah of this circus. I do hope you and yours will join us this year.
When it comes to God – and Donald Trump’s leading in the polls, Bruce Cockburn sings it best – “You can’t tell me there is no mystery. It’s everywhere I turn.”
Welcome back, Judsonites!
Sunday School Staff
Judson Sunday School’s dynamo staff is led by Andy Frantz, our Church School Director (better known as the Grand Poobah) of 20 years and counting. Judson Sunday School provides classes for preschool through high school students. Andy is currently aided by six teachers, a couple of whom are former Judson kids themselves, now all grown up. We are also fortunate to have the support of a wonderful Sunday School committee whose membership is open to all parents.