Baby Jesus, currently in the Nativity display at Blacktip Island’s Interdenominational Baptist Church, is at the heart of multiple fights between the small island’s religious factions. (photo courtesy of Jerrod Ephesians)
Ownership of a Baby Jesus figurine in Blacktip Island Nativity displays this week exploded into multiple physical altercations between members of the small Caribbean island’s two Christian churches, church spokespeople said.
“It started with the Protestants stealing Baby Jesus from our outdoor Nativity scene and putting Him in theirs,” Our Lady of Blacktip’s Father Audley Crossblesser said. “Somebody swiped Him one night, bold as brass, and the next morning He was in their Nativity. We took Him right back, and the two congregations’ve been snatching Him back and forth like clockwork ever since. Last night we thought Dermott Bottoms was guarding our Nativity, but it turns out he was just passed out in the bushes and we lost Jesus again.
“There were fisticuffs at both Nativity scenes this morning,” Crossblesser said. “Those Baptists’re sneaky—they dress up like our parishioners, and even tried to buy some of us off. We walloped every one of ‘em we could find, though, and excommunicated all the traitors in our midst. Now we just need to get Jesus back. We got volunteers with lionfish spears planning a raid, but I can’t say more than that.”
Protestant church members disputed the claim.
“That figurine’s part of our Nativity. Always has been,” Blacktip Interdenominational Baptist Church’s Reverend Pierre Grunt said. “When we were unwrapping the figures this year, little Jesus was missing. Then, lo and behold, it turns up in Our Lady’s Nativity. Damn right we took it back. And smote the thieves in the process.
“This morning we wrapped in a bare, 220-volt wire around Baby Jesus to zap any would-be manger robbers,” Grunt said. “Lee Helm tried to snatch it around sunrise, and the current knocked him six feet across the parking lot. Serves him right, the filthy little Jesuit. They’ll need rubber gloves and gum-soled boots to steal Jesus this time. If they get past our congregants with broom handles.”
The island’s Ecumenical Council urged peace from both sides.
“It shouldn’t need to be said, but none of this is in the spirit of the season,” the former Reverend Jerrod Ephesians, council president, said. “Big picture, it’s a time for hope and for rebirth archetypes—Mary and Jesus, Isis and Horus, that kind of thing—not religious gang fights. We’re urging both sides to share Jesus until a replacement can be found. An empty manger’s a bad visual. Theologically, the message there’s pretty bleak.”
Others in the community want to eliminate the Nativities altogether.
“Those little statues’re graven idols, dude. That’s a big no-no,” Alison Diesel said. “And coveting a graven idol of Jesus? That’s fourth- or fifth-level of Hell stuff. Plus, Baby Jesus electrocuting people’s over the top even for this island. Fun as hell to watch, but over the top.
“People need to skip the bogus dioramas, chill and enjoy the season,” Diesel said. “Do a double shot of eggnog and watch the holiday movie of your choice. Or not. Just don’t be an a-hole or electrocute anyone.”