Pssst. Hey you. You like pie? I know a guy who knows a guy who is married to a woman who makes the best apple pie in the East. You didn’t hear it from me but I’m hearing there’s a black market for these kinds of things, not that I’m involved with it. I just hear things, if you know what I mean.
Why, back in the day, women could sell their pies to anyone who had a taste for it but that was before the great Pie Inspection Massacre at St. Cecilia’s. What? You haven’t heard of it. Well St. Cecilia’s had a pie sale and one Grandma, who was famous for her chocolate pie, made some pies for the Church to sell to keep the school open. And everything was fine, that is, until the government showed up and confiscated all the pies because of some law that states that any pies sold must be made in a state inspected kitchen.
Well Grandma didn’t like that much. And then things got ugly.
There were riots. The National Guard was called in. And ever since then pies…well let’s just say they’re a little harder to come by.
So anyway, are you interested in pie. Yeah? Then meet me tonight behind the Church and we’ll see about hooking you up with some Pumpkin pie. Make sure you’re not followed and if the government comes, you don’t know nothing. You got me?
Think I’m kidding? We’re not that far from this. Big government is now coming after church bake sales.
According to theWall Street Journal
On the first Friday of Lent, an elderly female parishioner of St. Cecilia Catholic Church began unwrapping pies at the church. That’s when the trouble started.
A state inspector, there for an annual checkup on the church’s kitchen, spied the desserts. After it was determined that the pies were home-baked, the inspector decreed they couldn’t be sold.
“Everyone was devastated,” says Josie Reed, a 69-year-old former teacher known for her pumpkin and berry pies.
Sold for $1 a slice, homemade pies have always been part of the Lenten fish-fry dinners at St. Cecilia’s, located in this tiny city near Pittsburgh. Similar dinners are held in church basements and other venues across the country this time of year.
After a state crackdown forbidding the sale of homemade pies, members of St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Rochester, Pa., proceeded with their annual Lenten fish fries anyway. The pie flap helped draw healthy crowds.
The problem is the pies are illegal in Pennsylvania. Under the state’s food-safety code, facilities that provide food at four or more events in a year require at least a temporary eating and drinking license, and food has to be prepared in a state-inspected kitchen. Many churches have six fish fries a year, on Fridays during Lent. St. Cecilia’s has always complied with having its kitchen licensed, so food made there is fine to serve. But homemade goods don’t make the cut.
The disappearance of Mary Pratte’s coconut-cream pie, Louise Humbert’s raisin pie and Marge Murtha’s “farm apple” pie from the fish-fry fund-raisers sparked an uproar that spread far beyond the small parish. The local paper dubbed it “piegate,” and a nearby bakery donated pies to the church to help fill the gap at the dessert table. There are reports of other churches continuing to sell contraband pastries. Legislation to overturn the baked-goods ban is being discussed.
Don’t worry, the state has told the ladies that if they pay a fee, they government will come in to inspect their kitchen to see if their kitchen is up to state standards for a bake sale.
So in a time where Catholic churches and schools are struggling to make ends meet, another fundraising tool is being over regulated and made more difficult.
Big government, just by its nature, will attempt to crowd out religious organizations. It seems to me, Jesus had a run-in with BIG GOVERNMENT that didn’t go all that well. And the story goes on and on and on…