Vatican City - (Rioters): Official: Jesus did not party. Ever. Especially in fancy dress involving false hair, make-up, ladies frocks or jewellery. That is the sombre message from the Ponitifical Committee for Hysterical Sciences which has threatened to excommunicate a Milanese firm that is selling Jesus wigs, beards and plastic crowns of thorns.
But the Jesus fancy dress kits are selling faster than the shop can re-stock after some local publicity involving New Year's Eve revellers and the annual trans-gender glamour competition which awarded the title of Miss Garden of Gethsemane 2006 to a 6foot 9inches Dinka lap dancer dressed as the Holy Redeemer.
Father Vittorino Grossi of the Pontifical Committee has issued a statement decrying what he has called
regurgitated paganism: "This is a shameful insult and blasphemous to millions of believers", he told the Rome press yesterday.
"It's worse than the Roman graffiti of 1,800 years ago that showed Christ with a donkey's head."
Meanwhile his equally uptight colleague Bishop Velasio De Paolis, Secretary of the Apostolic Signature could hardly contain his own rage:
"It's come to the point where the Catholic faith has no defence and it is something to be laughed at, to be made a joke of", he whined. "The Christian doctrine is exploited but everyone is very careful to be respectful of homosexuality".
The wig/beard/crown of thorns ensemble is retailing at $25.