It seems so terribly grown up and religious to be serious. Does it ever occur to you how awfully serious we are all the time about everything? How boring is that?

Children laugh. Adults, it seems, are forgetting how to. We are so serious and most of all we are serious about ourselves.

The saints write and speak so often about humility, and our Holy Father Benedict speaks beautifully about humility and he also warns against laughter, but I think his warnings about laughter are warnings against cynical laughter, mockery, vulgarity and useless frivolity.

A genuine guffaw at the pride, self righteousness and stupidity in the world is a good and healthy thing. It’s good to poke fun at the pompous, joke about the politicians and most of all laugh at ourselves.

Remembering Chesterton’s line something about “the angels can fly because they take themselves lightly.”

I’m think that for Advent as a joyful act of penitence I’m going to find something silly, stupid, proud and pompous about myself to laugh at once a day. I’m going to ask my people to point out my vanity, self importance and donkey ears.

In fact, I’m think that I might take to doing silly things simply in order to appear the fool that I really am before others who always expect me to be super serious.

I shall don a jester’s hat, or sport a rubber nose. I will put a whoopee cushion under the cushion on the bishop’s throne and strap donkey ears on the heads of the super serious.

Not really, but I do think we could do with a bit more laughter and joy…I would be far more religious if I were a bit more irreligious and a bit more serious if I were only more ridiculous.

We could do with a bit more mockery and poking fun at pompous people.

Starting the the ass in the mirror.