Saturday, May 19, 2007

NIH Promotes Infant Baptism

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has approved a new policy that will be implemented on January 1, 2008. In this new policy, the NIH will begin promoting infant baptism within all denominations.

Stephen Luther, public spokesperson of the NIH, explained the rationale for this decision. According to Luther, "Recent studies have consistently shown that infants who are baptized are significantly cleaner than those who are not. Factors such as amount of water, holiness of the water, who is holding the baby, and who does the baptizing do not seem to affect the outcomes of the studies. The key is that the infant must have been baptized."

The NIH plans to take the findings of these studies to the U.S. Congress. Congress will then have to decide what to do with the results. Some high-ranking government officials have already weighed in with their opinions. Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, has indicated that the government has the responsibility to ensure the cleanliness of all children. Pelosi will reportedly introduce two bills in the spring of 2008. The first bill would make church attendance mandatory for all children ages 1-3. The second bill would make infant baptism mandatory for all of the attending children.

President Bush, when told of Pelosi's actions, immediately indicated that he would veto any bill that made infant baptism mandatory. Bush said that Pelosi's bills would in no way help the US win the war in Iraq; therefore, he would veto the bill. Bush further stated that the "generals on the ground" must decide about infant baptism.

As far as denominations are concerned, those in favor of both the NIH findings and Pelosi's bills include Catholics, Episcopalians, Lutherans, Presbyterians, and Methodists. Spokesmen for all of these denominations said that they always knew infant baptism had both spiritual and physical benefits. They are reportedly also excited about the probability of increased attendance at their worship services.

Paige Patterson, President of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, said that the scientific findings were ridiculous. According to Patterson, "If an infant is sprinkled with a few drops of water, that isn't going to clean his dirty diaper." Patterson went on to say that even if a law is passed enforcing infant baptism, Southern Baptists will defy the law.

We are told that Patterson is already planning civil disobedience rallies all over the South. The biggest damage Southern Baptists could do is to the restaurant industry. If Patterson calls for a boycott of barbecue establishments, the pork industry could take a big hit. The same is true for the macaroni-and-cheese and butter beans industries.

"The ramifications of the NIH's findings are wide ranging," said Patterson. "One thing is for sure, we Baptists are ready for a fight."

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