Summary: This was written as part of a course on apologetics. I read in an Alister McGrath book, I think, that people often reject Christianity without really knowing the real thing. Seems a shame, especially as we are talking about something which lasts beyond this life.
Style: Light-hearted. Duration: 7min
Characters: Doctor, patient
Doctor: Good afternoon. How can I help you? What seems to be the problem?
Patient: Well, doctor, I was thinking prevention is supposed to be better than cure - so I thought I’d come in for an inoculation.
Doc: Very wise. Yes very wise indeed. Err…I’ve known you and the family a long time and I thought you’d had all the jabs going. Even the triple as I recall.
Patient: Oh sure. But I don’t think I’ve had this one. And I thought I just might be falling for an attack.
Doc: Attack. What of? What is it exactly you think you might have been exposed to?
Patient: Well, you’re the expert, of course, but I thought I might be coming down with a spot of Christianity.
Doc: Oh no. Surely not. There’s not much of that around these parts. Can’t remember last time I saw a real case.
Patient: Well I’ve recently come into contact with one or two carriers and I thought it might be catching. Infectious.
Doc: Well, yes, certainly in the past there have been quite alarming epidemics of Christianity. Pandemics even. But I wouldn’t be too concerned.
Patient: But just to be sure is there not a jab that would protect me?
Doc: Oh, absolutely. There have been several serums we have used in the past with good results to keep the Christianity bug at bay. Like other inoculations they work on the principle of giving you a dose of something like the real thing but nothing like as potent.
Patient: How do you mean exactly?
Doc: Well. like Jennings who invented vaccination. He prevented the spread of smallpox by infecting people with the far less harmful cowpox.
Patient: Oh, I see. So what could you infect me with to stop me coming down with Christianity?
Doc: Well let me see now. First there’s the “do-goodism” serum.
Patient: What’s that?
Doc: A bogus form of Christianity which people sometimes catch. Perfectly harmless - in fact quite pleasant in its way. But not the real thing. Enough to ward off a real attack of Christianity, I would think.
Patient: Are there any side effects?
Doc: Nothing terrible. You might start running marathons for charity for a while or helping old folk across the road - even when they’re perfectly happy to stay on the side they’re on. It’ll probably wear off quickly. And even if it doesn’t - no harm done. People will think highly of you probably.
Patient: Will the inoculation be long-lasting?
Doc: Absolutely. As long as you live.
Patient: (thoughtful) Mmm. Is there any other injection? You mentioned several.
Doc: Oh, for sure. There’s the old stand-by that people have used to ward off Christianity for years.
Patient: What’s that?
Doc: Goes under several brand names but in this surgery we call it Churchianity. Again it has characteristics of Christianity but with none of the potency. People who have contracted Churchianity tend to go to the right places, do the right things, say the right things - sometimes in an unintelligible language - that kind of stuff.
Patient: Oh. And if I had that inoculation would I suffer with any side effects?
Doc: Not a lot. People with the disease itself speaking of attacks of crushing boredom quite often. But you may consider it worthwhile if it wards off an attack of the real Christianity bug.
Patient: And what about the lasting effects of this one?
Doc: Well again, it should do you for life.
Patient: (thoughtful) Mmm. For life. Is that everything then?
Doc: Well, I’d be wrong not to advise you that some people do chance it and choose not to be vaccinated at all. Obviously there are inherent dangers in that approach. You can choose natural prevention techniques like filling your life with so much activity that your brain struggles to find capacity to think of things of a spiritual nature. It doesn’t matter what you fill your life with really. Good things like family or sport. Or obsessions like luxury cars and so on. Just as long as you don’t get round to freeing up space to think things out. But clearly it could be a bit hit or miss. Things could break through when you least expect them. Anyway it’s in your court. You choose. Any questions?
Patient: (thoughtful) Mmm. Well yes. It’s to do with the length of the protection you mentioned really.
Doc: Well, as I say, it’s as long as you live. For your natural lifespan.
Patient: And then what?
© Andy Lund, all rights reserved
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