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» Ship of Fools   » Things we did   » The Laugh Judgment   » Desert island church

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Source: (consider it) Thread: Desert island church

# 1

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Joke submitted by whitelodge:

A man is rescued after many years on a desert island.

As he stands on the deck of the rescuing vessel, the captain says to him, "I thought you were stranded alone. How come I can see three huts on the beach?"

"Well," replies the castaway, "that one there is my house and
that one there is where I go to church."

"And the third one?" asks the skipper.

"Oh, that's the church I DON'T go to."

[ 18. July 2005, 22:40: Message edited by: Simon ]

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Eternal memory

Posts: 3787 | From: London | Registered: Mar 2001  |  IP: Logged
Lurker McLurker™

Ship's stowaway
# 1384

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In the version of this I know, the castaway is a Scottish Presbyterian.

I don't find the joke offensive at all, it pokes fun at denominationalism, rather than at God.

Just War Theory- a perversion of morality?

Posts: 5661 | From: Raxacoricofallapatorius | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Alan Cresswell

Mad Scientist 先生
# 31

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The version I know (I'm sure everyone knows at least one version of it) had three huts - his church, the church he used to go to and the church he has nothing to do with.

Don't cling to a mistake just because you spent a lot of time making it.

Posts: 32413 | From: East Kilbride (Scotland) or 福島 | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Goodwife and low church mystic
# 4398

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This joke (if one can use the term in this context) just doesn't work for me. It's the worst I've read so far. Why doesn't it work? It's far too thin and dead dull. A joke should be sharp or witty or outrageous or satirical or just plain corny if I'm to laugh at it. Jokes ought to prick, shock or bring about some form of recognition - affectionate recognition like the Pinocchio joke - or by making us aware of our own weakness and failure or the craziness of the societies and cultures we live.

Perhaps people whose lives have been affected by sectarianism or less seriously by high church/low church/denominational snobberies or divisions might be able to raise a smile but basically both the lead up and the punch line are pants. Desert Island jokes are often pretty crap, IMO.


Protestant head? Catholic Heart?


Posts: 1581 | From: Notlob City Limits | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged
Midnight Scholar
# 9112

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The version of this I know involves an Orthodox Jewish couple who are similarly rescued after being marooned; on noticing that there are two identical prayer huts on the island, the rescue boat's captain asks about the second one, and is told, 'Oh, that's the shul we don't go to'.
Don't know why I find this funnier as a Jewish joke, but I do.
Answers on a postcard please....

Men are from Earth. Women are from Earth.
Deal with it.

Posts: 129 | From: out there | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Ship's Inquirer
# 3271

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I found this very funny, even though I have heard it before. I think anybody who has left a church to go to another one, especially under less than happy circumstances, could find this amusing. The thing that makes this funny to me is that this man is completely in charge of how he worships, and apparently when he decides to change, he feels he has to have a new place and also leave the old hut to remind him of his previous days as a heretic(?). Not offensive at all.

No longer the Bishop of Durham
If men are so wicked with religion, what would they be without it? --Benjamin Franklin

Posts: 5259 | From: Deep in the American desert | Registered: Sep 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sir Kevin
Ship's Gaffer
# 3492

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Perhaps he used to be Catholic and now he's a member of the Church of Scotland; perhaps he used to belong to a church with a magnificent pipe organ, and having run out of funds to maintain it, changed to a denomination that does all singing a capella.

It makes perfect sense to me. I've changed parishes a couple of times. Why shouldn't anybody understand it? [Killing me]

If you board the wrong train, it is no use running along the corridor in the other direction Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Writing is currently my hobby, not yet my profession.

Posts: 30517 | From: White Hart Lane | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
# 58

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I've heard this before in a variety of forms, but I like this variant. It's the idea that someone wrecked on a desert island with limited resources at his disposal would build, out of all the things that he might conceivably need and consider essential for survival, two churches in addition to a basic hut.

I've heard this joke used in the setting of a nursing ward where the nurse asks a patient which church he goes to and then says "well, which one don't you go to". But it's harmless. Which is refreshing.

Posts: 25445 | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Newman's Own
# 420

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I can recall many jokes about the church one does not attend, though most not on desert islands. Usually, the theme involved the wealthy, who withdrew from a parish where they had a row or felt slighted in order to move to another rich church (of the same denomination) nearby. I mention this because, having heard so much on this theme, I did not think of sectarian quarrels or doctrine when I read this particular joke.

My mental picture was of one who had to maintain snobbery to stroke his ego. He must have the church he snubs - even with no one attending.

It is not offensive, but the theme is well-worn and therefore rather boring.

“History as Revelation is seldom very revealing, and histories of holiness are full of holes.” - Dermot Quinn

Posts: 6740 | From: Library or pub | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged

# 283

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Like Midnight Scholar I'd heard it before as a Jewish joke. In fact, of all the jokes so far, it's the perfect multifaith one; you can adapt it for temple/mosque/gurdwara/any other place of worship. Not a bit offensive, just says a lot about people and their religious communities!
Posts: 2456 | From: West Midlands UK | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

High Church Valkyrie
# 2349

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In the version I submitted, it was originally a Baptist joke. The man was showing them around: "This is where I live, and this is where I go to church." And what is that other building? "Oh, that's where I used to go to church, before I got mad and left."

I'm not dead yet.

Posts: 15117 | From: Valhalla | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged
Jonah the Whale

Ship's pet cetacean
# 1244

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I like this version of the joke because it doesn't say anything about him leaving the other church. The way I see it, the castaway built the other church specifically to have somewhere to NOT attend. This pokes fun at our some of our human frailties like sectarianism and pride. Not in the least bit offensive, especially since the brand of Christianity (it could have been any religion, as already pointed out) is not mentioned.


Posts: 2799 | From: Nether Regions | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
The Bede's American Successor

# 5042

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I am able to sum up my reaction to this one fairly fast: Old. I correctly guessed the joke when I saw "Desert island church."

A good joke about human nature, though.

This was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride of wealth and food in plenty, comfort and ease, and yet she never helped the poor and the wretched.

—Ezekiel 16.49

Posts: 6079 | From: The banks of Possession Sound | Registered: Oct 2003  |  IP: Logged
# 3452

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it needs a better context. The version i heard was about welsh baptists. I guess it works for scottish presbys and a few others too.

This just doen;t work for your average joe, who toddles along to church without really thinking why that church particularly.

Old joke too, heard it first a long time ago, and whilst it is an interesting comment on human nature, it is neither particularly funny, nor offensive.

It's the kind of joke one could easily tell in just about any company of people who had some understanding of church politics, and to that end, is maybe one of the most usable here.


Maybe that's all a family really is; a group of people who miss the same imaginary place. - Garden State

Posts: 3847 | From: The courts of the King | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
Ship's Roundhead
# 2460

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Rabbis when I first heard it.

And it was two rabbis & more than three synagogues... 5 or something... something like one each, one to go to together ending up with "ands that's the one we don't go to together"


L’amor che move il sole e l’altre stelle.

Posts: 39579 | From: London | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
Midnight Scholar
# 9112

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'two Jews, three opinions' as they say (so if you're BOTH rabbis, and you're trying to decide which shul you can attend together, it gets a darn sight more complicated even than that [Smile]


Men are from Earth. Women are from Earth.
Deal with it.

Posts: 129 | From: out there | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged

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