Sign up now to compete for the title ‘Top Priest’

Okay, just kidding. But you looked, didn’t you?

After all: can it be too far ahead? When we saw “The Real Housewives of Proverbs 31” as a headline to a fine meditation on the current moment in popular culture by Diana Butler Bass, it got us to thinking.

A little research turned up the following clip of Imam Muda, a Malaysian religious reality TV show – and an unabashed one at that.

Meena Hartenstein notes that for their first challenge,

the men performed traditional Muslim ablutions on corpses at a morgue that had gone unclaimed for weeks, later burying the bodies in accordance with Islamic rites. In later episodes, the men joined a police crackdown on teenage motorcyclists and cried as they counseled unmarried pregnant women at a women’s shelter….

The producers say “Imam Muda” is the most-watched program ever on its Islamic-themed cable channel, and a Facebook page dedicated to the show has nearly 30,000 fans.

Truly there’s nothing new under the sun, and especially in the realm of television development. So, despite the fact that reality competitions can be little more than occasion for schadenfreude, we wait. Meanwhile, here are some other titles we’d like to apply for – or at least cover in this space.

  • Who Wants to be a Thurifer?
  • So You Think You Can Administer the Sacraments
  • Preaching with the Stars
  • Survivor (of Church Camp)
  • The Real World Lambeth Palace
  • American Idol-Smasher
  • Extreme Makeover: Chancel Edition
  • What Not to Bless
  • Chasuble or No Chasuble

What title are you waiting to DVR?

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  1. Michael Russell

    Say Yes to the Vestments

  2. DdaSilvaCornell

    Um, isn’t it obvious? “The Amazing Grace,” of course.

    David Cornell

  3. Rev. Kurt

    Maybe we should have a reality show called “The Search” in which contestants, I mean priests, are all vying to be the next rector at St. Swithins.

    Each week those who are allowed to continue could be given a cross instead of a rose…

    Rev. Kurt Huber (Monroe, CT)

  4. Well, since this would never occur to you, how about Touched by a Layperson?

    Sheesh, these people who think church is what the priests do…

  5. Dä'ved Äyan | David Allen

    In spite of the cheesiness that we read back into this because of the reality shows here in the Americas, and there are now plenty in Latin America, including Latin American Idol, I have never seen such a good representation of Islam. They are smiling. There is much genuine affection for their brother contestants. And from the subtitles, they are about God’s work in many similar ways that we are as well.

    And some of those candidates are knock outs in the handsome department!

  6. John B. Chilton

    Rector Swap – Before the swap, each rector has to fill out a detailed handbook describing every aspect of their church’s lives to help the other wife rector get acquainted with her new church and living situation.

  7. Shelley Huston

    And, John, all must agree that the first 6 weeks (after all, the “wife swap” is for two full weeks and everyone knows priests only work on Sundays) the priests must do as the parish is accustomed while the second 6 weeks, the parish must do as the priest dictates. Snicker.

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