|First Church of Springfield|
|Place of Worship|
|First Appearance||The Pagans|
The First Church of Springfield is a Protestant Christian church in Springfield. It is part of the Western Branch of American Reform Presbylutheranism denomination. Most Springfielders attend. Reverend Lovejoy is a member of the clergy of Presbylutheranism.
As with any Church, the main service to the community is their Sunday Service, which most Springfieldians attend. However, they also have offered other services, such as a help line, marriage retreats, outings, a thrift shop, picnic and Christian bands.
The main building of the church is laid out with pews going down until the altar, where the Reverend preaches. At the end of each session, a dish is passed round for donations. Lack of donations have led to the church being bought by Mr. Burns on two occasions. The Church also ran a Sunday School, attended by many local children and taught by Ms. Albright. The church also has an office and a room in which the church council met.
The stained glass windows have varied throughout the Church's history, originally being based on St. Eleutherius, St. Bartholomew, St. Lucian and St. Donickus. They appeared in a vision that Reverend Lovejoy had once. Later, Bart and Homer accidentally destroyed the Church using a rocket they made with the help of Gary, Doug and Benjamin. Later on, Bart smashed the windows again, this time of the apostles. The Church cut corners by letting Lenny do the replacement windows, but ended up with the characters of The Drew Carey Show. Burns sponsored the church and replaced them with himself doing heroic actions.
The sermons preached within the church are actually false heresies, for example, the Sunday school teachers that one must follow the ten commandments to enter Heaven and that good people go to Heaven and bad people go to Hell, when in reality, one is saved by the abundant grace of God through the spilled blood of Jesus Christ and his crucifixion, burial and resurrection.
The church has twice come under Charles Montgomery Burns' control. The first time occurred due to Bart and Homer accidentally destroying the Church using a rocket they made with the help of Gary, Doug and Benjamin to beat the Flanders' rocket. Nibbles the Hamster, the pilot, lost control and ejected, sending the rocket on a collision course into the Church. The Church Council got together and realized that they couldn't afford to repair the damage. Mr. Burns offered to repair the church in return for running the church. The council, though reluctant, was left without a choice and Lindsey Naegle was left in charge of renovations. Lindsay and Burns commercialized the church by putting up advertisements inside the church, include a neon Jesus and a Lard Lad statue. Inside there were also impulse stalls, such as a money changer and a novelty Last Supper cutout picture, which gave Church goers a chance to be Jesus. The seats were upgraded to extra large and a jumbotron was installed with a "God Cam." The sermons were also affected, which included advertisements and commercial sermon takers. The commercialization of the Church service led to Lisa converting to Buddhism.
The second time was again due to money shortages, with Mr. Burns sponsoring the Church in a scheme to help his book sales. He replaced the stained glass windows with himself and added taco bars to the pews. As well as this, he gradually takes over sermons, showing commercials for his power plant and other advertisements. He also replaced the Bible with his autobiography, planning on turning Church into a book club. This caused Ned Flanders to leave the Church. Burns then developed a plan to become Pope and unlock the Vatican's riches, not realizing that the church was Protestant and not Catholic.
The church still remained at odds with Catholicism (even though they stopped feuding with each other), its more devout members needing to have their hands re-blessed after shaking with a Catholic. Reverend Lovejoy also has a rivalry with a local Episcopal church and has engaged in a brawl with a Catholic priest. Native religions, for instance those which are found in the south Pacific, are seen as inferior, and missionary activity is employed to ridicule away the beliefs of native peoples. The church also has enemies on a social level, including monogamous gays and stem cells.
Behind the LaughterEdit
The unusually specific name of the Church is a parody of Protestant reformed churches branching off into other denominations and movements.
- Lenny and Carl are seen at the church despite being Buddhist.
- The church apparently has a night minister named Ahmed. He's never seen on screen but referred to by Lovejoy at the beginning of "Lisa Gets An A."