Edward Bulwer-Lytton was a 19th century British author who wrote exceptionally bad prose, made famous in the modern era from the Peanuts cartoon character, Snoopy, and his eternal quest to write a book beginning with Bulwer-Lytton’s classic opening, “It was a dark and stormy night.” The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest is an actual annual event that asks entrants to compose the worst possible opening sentence to a novel by using bad prose with terrifying strings of adjectives ranging in categories from general to western, science fiction, romance, and so on. We thought there was a need for a religion category, with the sub-category of heresy. So here are our entries:
My favorite – the current state of the local Diocese: Heresy hung heavy over the diocese like a dank dark cloud of doom dripping its poison to form one giant river of Modernism that flowed unimpeded through the diocese with tributary streams to the parishes, trickling down to the soul of each and every man, woman, and child, therefore despite the flood of new diocesan programs and policies, the loss of faith soared.
The progressive entry – the convoluted drivel in diocesan programs, or rather, why Johnny doesn’t know the Faith: Religion is about creating solutions and changing lives which is what is really true because it’s not about achieving; it’s about who we are as we celebrate individuality by unity with the manifestation of expectation in the inclusive diversity of our lives with our ultimate goal, after respectfully discussing the pros and cons, revealing nothing.
The Modernist’s entry – the dumbed down state of our Masses: Bishop Bob raced into the worship space where he was soon to hold the liturgical festivities, for, as the celebrating presider at the table, bringing the bread and wine of the Christ figure to the people, he was suddenly aware of something that bishop in Rome had said, and wondered that Our Parent in heaven would have us behave rather than live an alternative lifestyle, for after all, it was 2016, C.E., and “the times they were a’changin’.”
(We've all heard this one) Apocalyptical – the coming storm: Since God frequently punishes sinful man by delivering him up to a reprobate sense and to the tyranny of the passions of his heart as the reward of his contempt of divine love, when the whole world shall renounce Christ and reject the authority of His Church then God’s treatment of the world shall be like to that of individuals; he shall respond to its criminal desires, which stifles the love of those saving truths, and He will deliver the world up to the man of sin who shall consign it to the darkness of vice and error since it rejected the light of truth and virtue – then Satan shall have universal sway for a while over all nations.