When I first got an invite for an interview from Mitch, I was intrigued. When I found out that he was a Pastafarian, I was very intrigued. For those of you who don't know, Pastafarians believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I won't go into all the details of the religion; there's plenty on the internet about it. Some see it as more of a satire of religion than an actual religion.
When news got around about a possible interview, some counseled against it - therein lies the controversy. I don't believe that we shouldn't go speak with people of other religions - don't certain cults forbid their followers of that practice?
The invite came right before my cross-country trip, so it wouldn't have been too difficult to go by Denver on my way home. Due to certain circumstances, there wasn't a meeting on that trip.
But why do the interview? Through the comments and emails that I received from Mitch, I could tell that he was sincere. He also agreed to the conditions that I wanted for the interview - the Rocky motif and the beanboozle. Also, I wanted to speak to someone in that religion. I'm fascinated with other religions and how they answer life's toughest questions.
And finally, I wanted to show others - Christians or otherwise - that Pastafarians and Christians can meet and have a respectful and intelligent dialogue (with disgusting beans! :)). All the videos that I have seen with Christians and Pastafarians end up in shouting matches. What a breath of fresh air to have an interview like this!
To be clear, this does not make me a pantheist nor am I endorsing the Pastafarian religion. I will always witness for Jesus Christ and try to convert others. In the same vein, I would expect Mitch to try to convert me to The Flying Spaghetti Monster.
Everyone's decision of what faith they want should be an informed decision. What better way than through peaceful (sometimes fun!) dialogue?