As you may recall, I urged readers to let me know if there were any mainstream news updates on that strange event the other day at Grace Episcopal (or is that Anglican?) Church in Colorado Springs. I refer to the actions of 18-year-old Marcus Hyde, who attempted to hit Father Don Armstrong with a pie during a sermon on a rather timely topic: "Of Christian Love and Charity." Most readers would assume that this was an act of protest linked to the priest's high-profile role in the global conflicts in the Anglican Communion. However, journalists are not supposed to settle for assumptions.
Thus, I appreciated a tip from a GetReligion reader who let me know that Hyde is, from time to time, a writer for a liberal Colorado Springs publication called Newspeak that has tangled with Armstrong in the past. In fact, Rocky Mountain News religion writer Jean Torkelson has more information for us:
First, there was a near miss with a pie. Now, surreptitious photographs of the embattled Rev. Don Armstrong are being posted, a la Candid Camera, by a self-described satire and gay-advocacy publication.
"Don Armstrong deserves it for any number of reasons," said Noel Black, publisher of Newspeak. The Colorado Springs publication has posted on its Web site nine photos that purport to show Armstrong parking his car illegally. ...
Marcus Hyde, the 18-year-old accused in the incident, is an occasional writer for Newspeak, Black said. Hyde did not respond to phone messages Wednesday. Black denied knowing about the prank beforehand but said, "I think it's great, a time-honored tradition of political protest."
As you would expect, Newspeak (motto: Not Reasoned Discourse but Fascist Tactics Since 2006) is having lots of online fun with all of this. I would expect that we have not seen the end of this spat.
However, I must at this time confess that I have a strong personal bias that will affect any future writing that I do on this whole pie-throwing episode.
You see, the GetReligion reader who sent me this information added another detail that left me shaken and furious beyond words. It seems that this errantly pitched pie, when it sailed past the sanctuary pulpit, almost hit (my hands are shaking as I type this) one of my very own godchildren who was seated in a chancel pew! I will not mention her name (she is the daughter of dear family friends from our days in Denver), because of the lingering threat of future pie attacks. I guess that I am now officially a crusty old godfather.