BURLINGTON – A sign outside of the old church on North Avenue reads: “Under New Management – Grand Reopening – Starting October 31.” While churches experience changes in pastoral leadership not infrequently, it is unusual to see a “new management” sign, leading some folks in the neighborhood to wonder what was going on inside the building.
“If everything goes well, we’ll be up and running on Halloween night,” said new pastor Sam A. Ninna, (D. Min.), “once the rituals are complete and we bring forth the elder gods to cleanse this world of the stain of humanity. I know I’m really looking forward to it!”
Several parishioners have expressed unhappiness at the directional change of the church, and say they won’t be back on Sunday. Others are willing to give it a chance before making a decision about their church home.
“It’s always different with every new pastor,” said longtime church member Donna N. Patchem. “I’ve been attending for longer than you’ve probably been alive, and pastors come and go. But whether we’re singing ‘Amazing Grace’ or ‘Hail Cthulhu,’ I don’t mind so much, as long as nobody messes with the every other Tuesday ladies’ luncheon.”
The church has been advertising the new format change all around town, drawing interest from some millennials who had previously never considered going to church.
“Yeah, I thought church was all boring, and judgy, and like, guilt and stuff,” said one guy on a skateboard who identified himself only as ‘Slide.’ “But now I heard there’s going to be demon summoning, and space monsters, and cool costumes, and I might actually check it out. Plus, I’m pretty sick of humanity and stuff right now, so I think wiping most of ’em from the planet might actually be a good thing.”
Rev. Ninna did not say what would happen if the creatures are not successfully summoned on Thursday evening, but said he feels confident that the new direction is just what the church needs.
“Look around. The times are changing. We need to speak to the new generation in a language they understand. One of chaos and helplessness. We built this world for them. Now let’s help them tear it down.”