In this Fortnightly parody, Interfaith Power & Light employees and users gather to celebrate a milestone.
"Maine Interfaith Power & Light announced Wednesday that it has enrolled 1,000 customers in its environmentally friendly electricity program since launching it on Jan. 23. This customer base is the largest ever for a fully renewable electricity offering in Maine." -Portland Press Herald, June 26, 2003
Zealous disciples of the gospel of "green energy" gathered in Maine recently, rejoicing that Maine Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) had achieved its goal of 1,000 customers for its environmentally friendly renewable energy program.
The service brought together organizers and customers from other faith-based energy programs across the country, including green-energy initiatives in California, Ohio, Michigan, and Georgia. Those who traveled to the service were encouraged to use fuel-efficient vehicles.
Dressed in shorts and wearing Birkenstocks, the worship participants sang lyrics off a large screen at the front of a wooded outdoor pavilion, projected using solar power. Selections included "Send the Light!" "Shine, Jesus, Shine" and "Zaccheas Climbed the Tree."
The sermon was drawn from a controversial text from chapter 24 of the gospel of Matthew, in which Jesus, describing the last days of creation, tells his disciples, "Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens be shaken. And then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory."
"People have been debating the meaning of this text for centuries," the presiding preacher told the congregation, "but one thing is clear: Jesus had a lot to say about power."
An offering plate was passed after the sermon, with the pastor reminding the attendees that "green" looks good in the plate.
Several organizations set up booths and handed out literature after the service concluded. "Mixing politics and faith can be dangerous business," said one activist, who wore a "Greens for Gore in 2000" button. "So we waited until the service had ended before we handed out our flyers."
A loose-knit coalition of religious fundamentalists gathered outside the service in protest. "The Supreme Court just struck down sodomy laws and approved affirmative action," one protestor said. "We were at a crossroads, trying to figure out what to protest next. When we heard about this service, we got the word out immediately."