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03 October, 2010

Holy Water! (said like Robin in the Batman TV show)

It's half past noon on Sunday, and the vast parking lot of the church at the end of our road is empty. The lot filled up for an hour, shuttle buses brought people from satellite lots, then everyone left. Some come back on Saturday for something or other, but for the most part people seem convinced that popping in for an hour is all they need to attain salvation. Oh, that and tithing to the church.

This particular place is called Church of the Living Water, but Church of the Killing Irony would be better, since they paved over a spring to build the place. More than an acre of impervious roof and asphalt, and so of course there's a big bulldozed basin intended to mitigate the damage to the wetland, or at least catch some of the storm runoff they create. By way of landscaping, there are parking lot islands of grass and some trees, and a genteel kill zone of pure grass on the street wide. Pure, luxurient grass and nary a weed in sight, which of course means hefty doses of chemicals. These run off into 18th street and eventually down to Indian Creek, a waterway as abused by the American experience as the people it's named after.

And this outfit has the gall to proclaim itself Church of the Living Water.

Of course, truth be told, the Lutherans, as old a Christian church as you can get without sticking to the original Catholic brand, have recently expanded their church (a block away) and also had to dig a big stormwater 'pond' (yay government!). There's is nicer looking, having some shrubs instead of just weeds.

Meanwhile, a block or so in the other direction, the Jehovah's Witnesses just started on a new Kingdom Hall. Ripped out some trees and of course all the blackberries a few weeks before they would have ripened. For two solid months now the construction crew has showed up, pushed dirt around, and left for random lengths of time. Basically all they've done is make their wetland pit. Last week they put down straw and hydro-seeded it. Which, in case you are not privy to landscaping terms means they pulled up with a tank truck full of water, chemicals, grass seed, and green dye, and sprayed it over the ground. The least natural and most ungodly way imaginable to make something grow.

It will work, establishing a hideous alien monocrop that will, chemical warfare aside, turn host to whatever other weeds drift in. I'm hoping for blackberries, personally, as a sign that even if god doesn't mind having flocks out trashing all Creation, at least evolution can achieve balance, or at least a bit o irony.

Maybe, maybe not. Better odds than hoping for a vengeful lord to smite the Church of the Living Parking Lot, though.

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