I don’t know exactly what religion Phaedra claims to be, but it seems to me that she has taken a random sampling of religious rites, thrown in a healthy dose of Dwight Eubanks and manufactured some made for Bravo TV religion. There was so much wrong with this event I hardly know where to begin. When it was first advertised I thought perhaps Phaedra belonged to a religion that follows the generally Catholic practice of christening, that is the practice of baptising a child with holy water for spiritual purposes. You know like Teresa from RHONY does with her kids. That is an event where the child’s acceptance into the religion is celebrated. Most southerners who are not Catholic do not have these events.
Phaedra referred to the ceremony as a blessing ceremony. In many faiths like Judism and Buddism for example a child is brought the church leader to be blessed. Biblically, this began in the old testament with Samuel being blessed by Eli and continued in the New Testament with Mary and Joseph bringing Jesus into the temple to be blessed. Very young babies are blessed in order to be officially a part of a religious family. It’s not a production, but a solemn ritual. In most southern churches, what we have is a Parental Dedication which generally includes a blessing from the pastor for the child. This ritual is part of a regular church service and is held once a month or once every few months depending on the size of congregation. Even though the children are not generally christened, it has become common for the babies to wear christening gowns and in some cases even have god parents participating. As part of the regular Sunday ceremony, the parents are tasked by the church to raise the child within the confines of their religion and the church family is tasked with assisting the parents and child of insuring that the child receives the proper religious upbringing. The ceremonies occur with multiple parents and babies of children born since the last ritual standing before the church and receiving this religious instruction and taking an oath to be proper parents.
I like Phaedra. I think her humor for the most part brings a lot to the show. However, there have been many times when her humor becomes very offensive. There are a lot of comedians who cross the lines and have very successful careers, Tracy Morgan and Kathy Griffin come to mind. The difference is, they do not bring their offensive material into a church where they claim to be practitioners of the religion. They don’t wrap themselves in religion while at the same time defiling it.
That’s just my opinion. I’m sure there will be other opinions in the comments. I just feel the need as someone from Atlanta to address the representations that television is putting out there of “church ceremonies” like the one you saw last night, or the viral videos of Eddie Long. These are not representative of Atlanta’s church going crowd. We’re not all snacking on chocolate likenesses of the baby Jesus while pretending to be southern belles with a fetish for royalty. That’s just Phaedra trying to be funny. Everyone has a different sense of humor. I was not amused.