The Colbert religion

Arch-satirist Stephen Colbert turns out to be a practicing, mostly-believing Catholic, as this blog chronicles:

In an interview with Time Out Magazine, he responded to a question about This Week in God: “How do you square your Catholicism with comedy?”

I love my Church, and I’m a Catholic who was raised by intellectuals, who were very devout. I was raised to believe that you could question the Church and still be a Catholic. What is worthy of satire is the misuse of religion for destructive or political gains. That’s totally different from the Word, the blood, the body and the Christ. His kingdom is not of this earth. . . .

And this from the oft-cited NPR Fresh Air interview:

This Week in God is–you know, This Week in God is, for me, a tightrope, because I–while I’m, you know, not a particularly religious person, I do go to church, which makes me kind of odd for my profession. You know, most people can’t understand why I do, other comedians. And I have to walk that thin line because I don’t want to criticize anyone’s religions for the fact that it is a religion, and what’s funny to me is what people do in the name of religion. …

We’re, you know, very devout and, you know, I still go to church and, you know, my children are being raised in the Catholic Church. And I was actually my daughters’ catechist last year for First Communion, which was a great opportunity to speak very simply and plainly about your faith without anybody saying, `Yeah, but do you believe that stuff?’ which happens a lot in what I do.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://www.scyldingsinthemeadhall.blogspot.com The Scylding

    I well remember a show some months ago, where a guest made the claim that God was the bad One, and the devil the innocent fellow. I’ve never seen Colbert “step out of character” so quickly, putting the guest in his place, stating the orthodox position clearly, concisely and forcefully. It was impressive.

  • http://pulchersentio.prwdot.org Will

    Colbert actually references his Catholocism with some frequency on the Report, particularly when he has an excuse to. A while back, N. T. Wright was a guest and they both spoke fairly frankly about similarities and differences between their faiths. Quite refreshing.

  • FW

    yeah but isn´t colbert one-a them thair liberuls? so.. can he REALLY be a true christian?

  • Kirk

    Colbert makes his living mocking Bush and therefore cannot find salvation.

  • Bill

    Kirk @ 4, right! You’ve spoken the genuine creed of the religious right.

  • http://www.scyldingsinthemeadhall.blogspot.com The Scylding

    Will @ 2 – the NT Wright interview was a good one. The good bishop actually proved quite adept at comebacks, almost outdoing the ever-witty Colbert.

  • http://pulchersentio.prwdot.org Will

    @TS, agreed. My favorite was when Colbert asked whether or not the material in Bishop Wright’s new book was “doctrine,” to which he replied, “Well, that’s the great thing about being an Anglican – If something is true, we believe it. You guys have to have big fat books and lawyers before you can believe anything.”