If you haven't heard the latest in what some within the religious right call the war on Christianity...well it's all about "My Sweet Lord", or what the press is calling chocolate Jesus. The chocolate sculpture was set to be displayed at a gallery in Manhattan. As publicity grew for the exhibit, the Catholic Church...particularly Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, expressed outrage until the show was cancelled by the Hotel that houses the gallery.
NEW YORK — A planned Holy Week exhibition of a nude, anatomically correct chocolate sculpture of Jesus Christ was canceled Friday after Cardinal Edward Egan and other outraged Roman Catholics complained.
The "My Sweet Lord" display was shut down by the hotel that houses the Lab Gallery in midtown Manhattan. Roger Smith Hotel President James Knowles cited the public outcry for his decision.
Matt Semler, the gallery's creative director, resigned in protest.
The six-foot sculpture by artist Cosimo Cavallaro was the victim of "a strong-arming from people who haven't seen the show, seen what we're doing," Semler said.
But word of the confectionary Christ infuriated Catholics, including Egan, who described it as "a sickening display."
Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, fumed, "It's an all-out war on Christianity. They wouldn't show a depiction of Martin Luther King Jr. with genitals exposed on Martin Luther King Day, and they wouldn't show Muhammad depicted this way during Ramadan. It's always Christians, and the timing is deliberate."
Cavallaro insisted the timing was purely coincidental.
The artwork was created from more than 200 pounds of milk chocolate and features Christ with his arms outstretched as if on an invisible cross. Unlike the typical religious portrayal of Christ, the Cavallaro creation does not include a loincloth.
I just don't get it...it's as if Donohue's issue is that Jesus had genitals. If God's intention, as deciphered by Donohue, was to give us genitals in order for us to demonize them, then just what kind of a prankster is God?
I for one am sick of those religious zealots who continue to fear sexuality and view everything through their tawdry template...making it necessary for them to condemn anything remotely related to sex as sinful or sacrilegious.
Genitals are no more inherently bad than the hands that grip a gun and pull a trigger in order to kill another...and yet Donohue isn't outraged that our hands are exposed. If God had the ability to bring Jesus into the world via a virgin birth, then why didn't God go ahead and remove his genitals. If their existence is as offensive and demeaning as Donohue believes, wouldn’t that make more sense?
Instead, if I understand what we are told is that God sent us a man just like all other men to show us that goodness is a choice available to all of us...even if we have genitals and hands.
Donohue's outrage exemplifies the real problem....bad thoughts and ideas are invented in the mind and those who hold such thoughts and ideas are the least capable of explaining God's intentions and carrying out his wishes. They suffer the worst of ailments...they believe that they know what God wants and that they are justified in serving as his foot soldiers...raising their voices and flaunting their influence to play God. That is evil...Chocolate Jesus is not evil...it's simply chocolate.
The controversy has created quite a stir on the internet. Take a look at what others are saying...here:
I thought it would be appropriate to post the following music video of Tom Waits singing a song he calls Chocolate Jesus and to offer my own bit of sarcasm in the graphic that follows the video clip. Perhaps I'm wrong, but if we're gonna stir the pot, let's stir it good, stir it real good...because anyone who has ever made chocolate knows you must do so or it will stick and burn.
Oh, one last thing, the answer to the question raised in the title of this posting is that after the Priest places the host (the body of Christ) in your hand, you put it in your mouth. So there you have it.
Tom Waits - Chocolate Jesus