Disclaimer: as a veteran of 16 years of Catholic education, I am entitled to poke a little fun. Besides… if I’m condemned to the fires of Hell, I’m pretty sure I’ll run into a bunch of people I know.
Many people don’t know this story….
Several years ago when the Pope visited St. Louis, a high ranking executive of the Anheuser Busch Brewery invited the The Holy Father to corporate headquarters.
After initial greetings and small talk, the executive said “Your Holiness, I’ll get right to the point. Our company is prepared to offer the Church $10 million dollars if you will change the words of the Lord’s Prayer to say ‘Give us this day our daily BUD’. While it may seem an unusual request, we believe your Church can use this money to help a lot of needy people.”
The Pope scratched his head. The look on his face made it obvious he wasn’t sold on this idea.
“Your Excellency, perhaps $20 million would be a better number?”
The Pope shook his head – he still wasn’t sure about this.
“Holy Father – if you will change the words of the Lord’s Prayer to say ‘Give us this day our daily BUD’ we will donate $50 million dollars to the Church. This is our final offer.”
The Pope sat silent for a minute and then said “I must pray about the matter and then discuss it with the College of Cardinals.”
Upon his return to Rome, the Pope addressed an auditorium filled with the College of Cardinals.
“Brothers of the Lord, I have some good news and some bad news.” A low murmur rippled through the crowd. “The good news – as of this morning, the Church has an additional $50 million dollars that we can use to serve the needy.”
A happy roar went through the room! The Cardinals erupted in joy, praising the Lord, clapping their hands and throwing their funny red hats in the air. When the commotion died down, a Cardinal in the front row stood up.
“Your Holiness, what is the bad news?”
The pope gazed down for a long time. Finally, he looked up and said…
“Gentlemen, I’m sad to say we’ve lost the Wonder Bread account.”