Penance

Two Catholic Jokes

An Irish Confession 

In a small Irish catholic parish, young Jimmy Mc Shane had to go to Confession. Jimmy was just sixteen, making his mother always surprised at the fact of his voluntary compliance.

On this particular Saturday Jimmie went in to promptly confess that he had carried on and went a little too far with one of the local girls.

The Priest asked:

  • Was it Mary O’Rourke? Well, no father, and even if it was, I would never betray her and tell more about it.
  • Well then, might it have been Kathleen O’Doul?
  • Well, no father, and like I just said, even if it were I would still be bound to protect her honor.
  • Oh for sure it must have been Peggy Flannery, then?
  • Ah, no again father, and even if it was I could never ruin her good reputation by divulging the name.
  • OK, then Jimmie. You’re a good boy for the most part and a very honorable lad to protect your little girlfriend like such, but as you know, the Church sincerely frowns upon such friendly and familiar sexual activity outside the bounds of matrimony. So out with you then and here’s your penance…

Jimmy left the booth and when he saw his friend Sean kneeling in the front pew asked:

  • So what did you get Sean?
  • God. A murderous penance of three Rosaries and six Acts of Contrition. And what about you, Jimmy boy? What was your holy bloody penance?
  • Well, I would say just about twice the same as you. But it was very well worth it indeed, ya know.
  • Be Jesus. Six Rosaries? And just how do you figure that one out to be worth anything but a blinkin’ torture for sure, Jimmy me boy?
  • Because, even though I got fairly and doubly worse the same damnable penance as you did, Sean… I also got meself quite a few damn good leads.

The Papal Version

Several nun novitiates, all in their late teens and early twenties were standing in the church sacristy waiting for final instructions from their supervising Priest before the final sacrament would install them as servants of God.

The Priest stood in front of a large cistern filled with Holy water and pontificated:

  • Now my dear women, you know that when the ring is placed on your hand it signifies your marriage to God, that you will forsake all others in his name and that those same hands will always be busy doing his good work. So this will be your final confession before the sacrament and your last chance to purify your soul before you take this final step. With that said, I shall ask you all once again to confess any potential former secular sexual indiscretions you may have had so that you might be fully forgiven, chaste and truly virginal like our Holy Mother Mary when you take the vows. Sister to be Theresa; what have you to say?
  • Well father. Once I thought about touching a boy on his penis but I never in fact did it.
  • Ah. That is only a sin of intention, not action, so come here and I will place some Holy Water on your brow and your impure thought is now to be cleansed. Now to you Sister to be Kathleen.
  • Well father. Once I sat in the back seat of a car and I touched a boy on the tip of his penis but that was it I swear to God and it frightened me so then I made him take me straight away to home.
  • All right then go over to the cistern and dip the offending finger in the Holy Water, rub it off and be on your way.
  • And next to you Sister to be Maria.
  • Father. I must confess. I once masturbated a boy to orgasm.
  • And do you happen remember which one was the offending hand, my dear.
  • No Father, I don’t.
  • Then go to the cistern, dip both hands in, cover the hands completely with Holy Water and rub them together to expunge the sin.

With that, Mary Alice, who was standing immediately second in line behind the next of the potential interrogates, Eileen, jumped out ahead of her, pointed to poor Eileen and said:

  • Listen to me good father. If you think for one second I’m gonna gargle with that shit after she sits in it, you got your fuckin’ head screwed on upside down.

(As told by Gina Davis in the Movie: Angie)

The Mission Priest

The Mission Priest

Although my mother officially pulled out of the Catholic Church after the Jesuit Brother tried to feel me up in Catechism class, we did make arbitrarily random appearances at Mass. It may have been related to residual guilt or perhaps something as abstruse as a maintaining a small investment in the religious insurance policy that guarantees a place in heaven. Old indoctrination sometimes dies a long and painful death for anyone having been brainwashed by it.

On one of those particular Sundays, when I was about seventeen years old, as opposed to the usual boring pap, the Pastor gave an extremely unusual electrifying sermon about next week’s highly anticipated visit by the “Mission Priest.” He then riveted everyone’s attention and hammered in the final nail by announcing this man was a special envoy from Rome itself. His home base was the Vatican and he was being sent to us for a brief respite from his hard work of converting the dark ignorant masses in Africa. The rhetoric ended with an appeal for everyone to let this man “hear your specially blessed confession.”

He said:

  • It will be the next best thing to having the Pope himself absolve your sins.

This was a first for our small Parrish, so the local priests were beside themselves with eager anticipation. The parishioners all bought into it too, resulting in longer lines on the pre-visit confessional Saturday than any other in the church’s history of collectively expunged sins. 

Although we did not go to that confession, on the following Sunday, curiosity got the better of us and we did go to the Missionary’s mass.

The man must have just arrived from some dismal assignment in darkest Africa, where the heat or some latent insect borne disease must have partially emulsified his brain, because it turned out to be the closest thing to a tent revival show that could ever be seen in a Catholic Church.

He was at once charismatic, energetic, mesmerizing, and was also just about one gearshift shy of being absolutely crazy. Leaping out from behind the pulpit his animated gyrations across the dais caused his robes to fly like sheets drying on a clothesline on a windy day, ultimately imparting the appearance of a purple dervish. With fire in his eyes and a message of brimstone damnation, the underlying theme to the sermon was that all men are guilty of everything until proven otherwise, ultimately making me feel that if he really dug in deep enough he could even get the Pope or Mother Theresa to lay out a litany of hidden dark spots on their souls. 

In making the congregation so paranoid about eternal damning fire in Hell, on the next Saturday the confessional lines were even longer; which unfortunately included my entire guilt-ridden family.

I should have known this was a bad idea because when I came face to ear in a small dimly lit cubicle with this nasty little Ambassador from Rome I had only just recovered from an adolescent guilty perception that Jesus, because he  must have had even better powers of ocular X-ray vision than Superman, was probably watching me when I went to jerk off in the basement bathroom. 

Beginning with the usual banal litany that usually worked so well with the regular priests, who never listened anyway,  we went through the boring routinely rote driven drill, I said:

  • Bless me father for I have sinned. It’s been three weeks since my last confession. These are my sins: I have talked back to my mother; I have disrespected my father…
  • Cut the crap. How old are you?
  • Seventeen.
  • So, seventeen, eh. Have you started to date yet? Do you like girls?
  • Yes, Father.
  • And, so, what do you do on your dates with these girls?
  • There’s only one girl, father.
  • So what exactly do you do with this one girl on your dates, eh? Do you kiss? Do you pet? Do you touch her genitals? Does she touch yours? Have you ever had oral sex or actual penetrating sexual intercourse? You know what that is, don’t you? Now tell me exactly what you do with this girl. All the details, too. I need to know EVERYTHING!

On and on went the terrifying interrogation while I gulped, coughed, mewled and sputtered some pathetically trivial answers.

After all one cannot lie to any priest, much less the special ambassador from Rome itself. In retrospect I was also too naïve to discount the possibility as he sat back in his little black booth, that he may have been getting his rocks off by hearing a long string of vicariously graphic descriptions of teenage sex spewed out by stuttering terrified sexual neophytes.  

I finally capitulated: Yes it was true I had kissed my girlfriend, and yes it was true that we had done some heavy petting. 

By the time the encounter was over, along with the usual banal lecture about saving oneself for the holy bonds of marriage, the special grace of entering marriage as a virgin, ad nauseam and ad infinitum, I was doused in a cold wet sweat that left me completely exhausted. 

He gave me the worst penance I ever had, sending me to kneel at the Alter with a burden of doing three entire Rosaries and four Acts of Contrition. Being used to far less cursory punishment, I thought this one was a bit too steep for the sin of heavy petting, so I did the task like doing a multiplication table. After every prayer, I simply muttered: “times ten” or “times four” and got out of the Church as fast as I possibly could; worrying that the maniac behind the screen might leap out of his little dark booth to haul me back in for Round Two. 

This was the second Epiphany that made me realize I had to get out of this crazy religion. The first one had come at age twelve when my dog died and I asked the priest if he was going to get into Heaven. I was told then that animals are not allowed into heaven, only human souls, and now I was being told that sex was taboo as well.

But somehow I instinctively knew that my limited encounters with sex seemed pretty pleasant up to that point, and not even close to the horror these nutty priests were attempting to portray. So here I was being chastised by a semi-psychotic zealot for liking women shortly after a Jesuit Brother tried to seduce me, while my dead dog’s soul was lost forever in Purgatory or Hell. The hypocrisy was too much to absorb. 

I also realized that if I was going to go to Hell over heterosexual sex; which I intuitively liked, then it would probably be a bonus. The realization also struck me that if people like the Mission priest were going to Heaven; a place also devoid of simple comforts like house-pets; then I did not wish to be within a parsec of their eternal prudish and animal avoiding presence.  

I thought I would rather choose to be in Hell with my faithful old dog, sipping on a Vodka, having a naked woman sitting on my lap and watching Duke win another National basketball title on TV. 

Now, that would be as close to heaven as it ever gets.

 Mission Priest

From//www.mtceuropavideo.com