Pineapple pizza

Pastoral Messages | April 27, 2017

One of the highlights of our seventh- and eighth-grade confirmation program is the final session of the school year – “Ask the Pastor.” Youth in the room wing every imaginable question the way of the pastor seated upfront on the stool. As one might expect, topics surrounding heaven, hell, drugs, sex, church, the Bible, and the pastor’s personal life all surfaced naturally.

Then there are those left field questions. “Do you think God likes pineapple on pizza or not?” I can’t say I put a lot of thought into that deep, theological inquiry. But I should have been ready for it. It’s been a couple months since the president of Iceland announced that pizza topped with pineapple ought to be banned. President Gudni Thorlacius Johannesson – I’d love that name for myself if it wasn’t so long – ignited a social media firestorm. Lines were quickly drawn.

Some believed Johannesson should face trial at the Hague as a war criminal. Others thought all pineapple pizzas should be relegated to Trump’s border wall and used as mortar joints. One wedding couple scrapped their reception menu to serve pineapple and ham pizza.

Since pineapples are not a cash crop in Iceland, we don’t know if President Johannesson has a deep acquaintance with their taste. But let’s hear him out. This was his follow-up statement:

“I like pineapples, just not on pizza. I do not have the power to make laws that forbid people from putting pineapples on their pizza. I am glad that I do not hold such power. Presidents should not have unlimited power. I would not want to hold this position if I could pass laws forbidding that which I don’t like. I would not want to live in such a country.”

At least Johannesson has a good sense about presidential powers. Imagine a world where rulers only passed laws or signed orders about things they don’t like. That would not be so good.

As for the pineapple-on-pizza question asked by our confirmation student? I could only smile. Then, with all the tongue-in-cheek confidence in the world, I said, “Absolutely! God loves pineapple on pizza.” What a wonderful projection onto God of my own tastes and preferences – something at which we’re all pretty adept. It’s a good thing that was the last question of the night. I needed to get off the stool, go home, and be quiet.

Copyright © 2017 Peter W. Marty. All rights reserved. Any use of this material must be attributed to Peter W. Marty. To reproduce this material in published format, please contact Peter.

3 Comments on “Pineapple pizza”

  • KJ Rebarcak

    April 28, 2017 at 7:29 am

    I like pineapple, but it and anchovies are the only two things I won’t eat on pizza. But if someone else wants to order a pineapple-and-anchovy pizza, I will defend their right to do so. I would imagine God likes anchovies on pizza. He did create those fish, after all. 🙂

  • David DeWit

    April 27, 2017 at 8:11 pm

    Anything but anchovies.

  • John Heath

    April 27, 2017 at 2:33 pm

    If I were President I would outlaw 3-bean salad at all church potlucks . Let them build the wall with those ingredients

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