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Home » Civil Rights » Unprecedented Pastafarian Wedding in New Zealand Celebrated

Unprecedented Pastafarian Wedding in New Zealand Celebrated

a couple with colanders on their heads kiss in front of a stained glass window depicting the Flying Spaghetti MonsterEver heard of the Flying Spaghetti Monster? If not, don’t bring that up to a pastafarian. What’s a Pastafarian? Well that’s a member of Pastafarianism, which could be otherwise referred to as the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The pastafarian doctrine takes an interesting approach to intelligent design — instead of a world created by a god or a team of gods, this religion believes that life was created by a Flying Spaghetti Monster.

Of course, with any religion, there are skeptics. Those who have subscribed to Flying Spaghetti Monster worship are constantly made the victims of a litany of injustices, not the least of which being the legal non-recognition of pastafarian marriages. But today, in New Zealand, bold steps were taken toward a bright future for Pastafarianism: Karen Martyn has become the first pastafarian granted the legal right to perform marriages.

Yo, Ho, Husband and Wife!

The first pastafarian wedding happened aboard a pirate ship, with Marianna Young and Toby Ricketts becoming the first couple in the history of the human race whose marriage “knot” is explicitly noodly. As the only ordained “ministeroni” on the planet, Karen Martyn naturally officiated the ceremony.

Perhaps you’re wondering why the wedding took place aboard a pirate ship. The answer to that question is a fundamental lesson in Pastafarianism! Indeed, pastafarians remember pirates as the first pastafarians in history, and worship them accordingly. “Talk Like a Pirate Day” is literally one of their religious holidays.

Were people at this wedding dressed as pirates?

Pastafarian newlyweds pose in pirate costumes

Yes. It would appear as though many, if not most of them, did just that.

It all sounds, admittedly, pretty silly on the surface. But if you think these newlyweds are blind to this, think again. Ricketts found out about Pastafarianism while making a documentary about religion and praises the religion’s lack of seriousness:

“That’s kind of what attracted us to it. We were never planning to get married and have a conventional wedding, but this allowed us to do it in a way that we’re comfortable with.”

But What IS Pastafarianism?

It started in 2005, when the Kansas Board of Education received an open letter from Bobby Henderson that challenged the state’s choice to promote creationism in schools. In his letter, Henderson proposed that the Christian belief in intelligent design is no more valid than the belief that the universe was created by a pasta god. Both theories, he claimed, shared a comparable lack of foundation in scientific principles.

The Kansas Board of Education never responded, so Henderson decided to post his letter online, which is where pastafarianism took off in a big way. It went viral, gained supporters, and before long, established itself as a very real, if satirically grounded, religious movement.

Pastafarians believe many things. First and foremost is that the Flying Spaghetti Monster, an invisible and undetectable deity, made the entire universe after getting very drunk. This, pastafarians explain, accounts for existence’s flawed nature. Evolution? Well, that’s just something the Flying Spaghetti Monster created as a test of faith for pastafarians. Sound familiar?

a painting depicts the Flying Spaghetti Monster touching a noodle to Adam's finger

As for the afterlife, pastafarians have two. It is called “heaven,” a magical place where beer erupts from a volcano and there’s a prositute factory. Or stripper factory. Depends on which pastafarian you ask. The other pastafarian afterlife is called “hell.” This place is identical to heaven, except for the fact that the volcano’s beer is stale and all the prostitutes or strippers have STI’s.

Apparently, Bobby Henderson included pirates in the pastafarian doctrine to prove that correlation can’t imply causation. Pirates, Pastafarianism claims, are known as criminals due to an organized slandering on behalf of the Christian establishment. In reality, they were “peace-loving explorers and spreaders of good will.” Did they give kids candy? Hell yes. And as the original pastafarians, pirates are obviously “absolute divine beings.”

That pirates were the first pastafarians is just part of the story — the religion also claims that a historical decline in the pirate population is the leading cause of global warming. This is where the “correlation doesn’t imply causation” argument comes in. Henderson supplied statistics to back up his claims that pirates caused global warming, in the form of a graph which demonstrated that the decline of pirates since the 1800’s directly corresponds with the increase in global temperatures.

Pastafarianism, of course, has its share of holidays (and not just Talk Like a Pirate Day). For one thing, every Friday is a holiday, although they aren’t alone on the pastafarian roster of holidays. Instead of Christmas, Hannaukah, or any of those other end of the year holidays, pastafarians have “Holiday,” which has no recognized date of celebration and is instead seen as encompassing the entire holiday season. Instead of Passover, they have “Pastover.” Instead of Ramadan, they have “Ramendan.” And so on. As you might have noticed, pastafarianism is ripe with puns.

Pastafarianism in the United States

Obviously, since the very first pastafarian wedding just happened in New Zealand, the battle for legal recognition in America is still raging. Efforts have been made toward pastafarian marriages here in the United States, but so far, none have proven successful.

Pastafarians firmly believe in the separation of church and state, and therefore it’s not surprising that lawsuits have been filed by pastafarians seeking to challenge their nonexistent right to marriage on the grounds of equal protection and freedom of speech. Since Pastafarianism has henceforth been legally recognized as a “satirical parody religion,” it’s churches have been explicitly denied benefits from legislation like the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act.

Supporters of Pastafarianism have responded to their “exclusions” by arguing that the government doesn’t have the power to discriminate between religions when providing accommodation. Put differently: when pastafarians celebrate a victory in their fight to achieve legal recognition, they celebrate them as victories for all people who subscribe to unrecognized religions. There’s no telling if pastafarian marriage will become legal in America’s near future, but let’s not forget that we live in progressive times. Same-sex marriages (and divorces) will have been legal for year come June, which should remind us that progress can be reached when a relentless effort is applied.

At Turner Law Offices, P.C., our team of attorneys has years of experience working with clients across a wide range of cases related to religious liberties. Whether you’ve been the victim of persecution or have been wrongly accused of such injustices yourself, the best course of action is always to seek trustworthy legal representation as good as possible. The sooner you start the process, the higher your chances of reaching a satisfactory resolution in the courtroom. Call today, or go online to set up your free initial consultation, and meet wit a skilled lawyer who’s ready and waiting to guide you toward the justice you deserve.

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