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There were two people in the temple, a journalist and a footballer

A modern-day retelling of Luke 18:9-14

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A response to Claire Harvey, deputy editor of the Sunday Telegraph: “I’m more of a Christian than Israel Folau is. I’m more of a Christian than anyone at the Australian Christian Lobby – and I don’t even go to church.”


There were two people in the temple – a journalist and a footballer.

The journalist could hardly be bothered going in because she was superior to all those inside. But on this occasion, she deigned to stoop down and enter.

‘I thank you, God, that I am not brainless like all those who worship you as this footballer does. I have not transgressed your Ten Commandments against homophobia. I feel like throwing up at the very thought of being in the same temple as this footballer.

I do not pay tithes or even donations, I love the Gay Mardi Gras, and I do not believe in hell. I thank you, God, that I am so courageous.’

Meanwhile, the footballer, deeply remorseful at his Polynesian white privilege, could barely lift his eyes to heaven. He prayed: ‘Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner.’

Eventually, the journalist and the footballer left the temple, albeit at different times, because the journalist did not want to feel contaminated and nauseous. One went back to media applause, and the other to his deserved opprobrium.


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