“…a merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance.”
Proverbs 15: 13
Everyone loves a good joke, even God. If he didn’t he wouldn’t have made some of the strange creatures that inhabit this world like long-necked giraffes, blobfish, proboscis monkeys, komodor dogs, and aye-ayes.
Now, there’s a new-to-us, old Christian holiday on the rise that gives us a good reason to have a few belly laughs in church: it’s called Holy Humor Sunday and will be celebrated in 2012 on April 15th.
A number of American churches have recently begun celebrating Holy Humor Sunday, resurrecting an old Easter custom begun by the Greeks. In the early centuries of Christianity, the faithful in Eastern Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant countries celebrated the week following Easter Sunday as “days of joy and laughter” with parties and picnics to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. The celebration, which included the Sunday after Easter known as “Bright Sunday”, included practical jokes played on and by pastors and parishioners, singing, dancing, and telling jokes. The custom, called the Risus paschalis—the Easter laugh, is rooted in comments from early church leaders who suggested God played a practical joke on the devil by resurrecting Jesus.
In 1988, the Fellowship of Merry Christians encouraged churches to resurrect Bright Sunday celebrations, renaming the celebration “Holy Humor Sunday.” “Jesus is the LIFE of the party” became the new theme of the holiday.
“Holy Humor Sunday services not only give Christians an opportunity for ongoing celebrations of the greatest miracle in human history – Jesus’ resurrection – it also gives each of us an opportunity to celebrate, and give thanks for, our own smaller resurrections in this world and this life.”— from The Joyfulnoiseletter website.
Since 1988, churches from many denominations have adopted the holiday, bringing large crowds back to church on the Sunday after Easter, when church attendance typically drops significantly.
As a nod to this unusual, but happy holiday, I’ve included a few Christian jokes on today’s blog. Even if your church isn’t celebrating Holy Humor Sunday on this April 15th, you can brighten someone’s life with a little bit of humor. So, go forth, tell a few jokes, and spread some cheer.
Hymns for People Over 50
Give Me the Old Timers Religion
Precious Lord, Take My Hand, And Help Me Up
Just a Slower Walk with Thee
Go Tell It on the Mountain, But Speak Up
Nobody Knows the Trouble I Have Seeing
Guide Me O Thou Great Lord God, I’ve Forgotten Where I’ve Parked The Car
Count Your Many Birthdays, Count Them One By One
It Is Well With My Soul, But My Knees Hurt
Holy One liners
Who was the greatest female financier in the Bible?
ANSWER: Pharaoh’s daughter. She went down to the Nile and drew out a little prophet.
One Sunday a pastor told his congregation that the church needed some extra money and asked the people to prayerfully consider giving a little extra in the offering plate. He said that whoever gave the most would be able to pick out three hymns.
After the offering plates were passed, the pastor glanced down and noticed that someone had placed a $1,000 bill in offering. He was so excited that he immediately shared his joy with his congregation and said he’d like to personally thank the person who placed the money in the plate.
And there sat our Rosie all the way in the back shyly raised her hand. The pastor asked her to come to the front. Slowly she made her way to the pastor. He told her how wonderful it was that she gave so much and in thanksgiving asked her to pick out three hymns.
Her eyes brightened as she looked over the congregation, pointed to the three most handsome men in the building and said, “I’ll take him and him and him!”
Dust to Dust
A little boy had just got home from Sunday School and mom was cooking lunch. “Mommy, is it true that before you’re born you’re just dust and after you die you go back to being dust?”
“That’s right son, why?”
“Well that’s just what they said at church today.”
“Run up stairs and wash your hands son, lunch will be ready in a few minutes.”
About 10 minutes went by and she called out for him to come down.
As they were about to sit down at the table, the little boy asked again about being dust before being born and after you die. Once again mother said yes son.
The little boy looked at her and said, then you better get up to my room pretty quick, because something under my bed is either coming or going!!
How do we know that men, not women, made the coffee in Biblical times?
ANSWER: It clearly states that He-brews.
A Resurrection Joke
(told by my minister Easter Sunday Morning)
At Sunday School teacher asked her grade school students if anyone knew what Jesus said when he rose from the dead.
A little girl jumped up, waving her arms in the air, shouting “I do! I do.”
“So,” said the teacher, “what did Jesus say?”
The child raised her arms over her head, hands fisted Rocky-style and shouted, “Ta Da!”
Do you know what sport played today is mentioned in the Bible?
Baseball. Because in the Big-Inning God created the heavens and the earth.
And that, folks, as Porky Pig says, is all there is!
Do you have a favorite religious joke you’d like to share?