Leaked Documents: Ichabod to Apollyon (Letter #28)

Editor’s Note: Administering a website like this occasionally makes editors privy to some exotic and intriguing correspondence. In light of the particularly dark nature of some letters we have stumbled upon—we can’t reveal exactly how—we thought it our duty to share this series of missives. We appear to be in possession of only one side of the exchange of letters—from a nephew to his uncle. The nephew’s name is Ichabod and his uncle’s name Apollyon, who seems to be in an advisory position of some sort. It’s not our intent to demonize anyone by divulging what we have seen, but we feel we are performing an important service by bringing this devilishly cunning correspondence to light. Here is the twenty-eighth letter we were given.




My Dear Mentor in Malice,

Many thanks for your encouragement of my efforts and your optimism about my winning recognition in the NAASSTY (I think you left out the last words in the title--"and Tempters of Youth").  I hope before long to advance to the Council of the Ungodly.  No doubt you were admitted long ago to the Way of Sinners and the Seat of Scoffers fraternities.  Is it true, as I have heard, that to be admitted to the Seat of Scoffers Society you have to give a thirty-minute impromptu refutation of some point of the Apostles' Creed?  And that furthermore it has to be scathing enough to reduce all but the strongest believers to abject intellectual shame?  That must be something to hear!  I would love to listen to your initiation piece sometime.  I may need the asbestos suit just for that.

I have no new initiatives or developments to tell about at Broad Way Church.  Actually, things seem to have been rocking along pretty well without any special effort on my part.  I heard a heartening statistic recently, to the effect that the average American gives only about 3% to charitable causes, and that moreover even the average church-goer doesn't rise above that level.  I'll bet most of the church people pay more of their income in interest on their credit card and automobile debts than they give to support the Enemy's work.  Hasn't the easy availability of credit been wonderful for our cause?  It works right in with our strategy of making discipline and deferred satisfaction look ridiculous.

As to your worry about reclaimed ministerial drop-outs, I think we have first of all to cultivate people's natural tendency to gloat over those who have "fallen" (never allowing the gloaters to realize that the only reason they've not fallen is that they've never been anywhere to fall from).  Even the sincere restorers of the fallen will probably not heed the warning of their Book to look to themselves, lest they too be tempted, and we can get at them in the vulnerability of their over-confidence.   One pitfall for these Believers that we don't have to deal with is getting careless and slacking off; our persistance has won many a victory that would have gone to the Enemy, if only His children had realized (as we do) that there is no truce in the battle we wage.  So even if the do-gooders in the "Safety Net" program achieve some turn-arounds, they probably won't get enough prayer support and financial help from the rest of the Body to carry on long-term; then they'll get discouraged themselves and wind up in the same boat as those they're trying to rescue.  May it be so!

Yours in demonic consistency,





Image: "mailbox" by Johnny Hughes. CC License.







Elton Higgs

Dr. Elton Higgs was a faculty member in the English department of the University of Michigan-Dearborn from 1965-2001. Having retired from UM-D as Prof. of English in 2001, he now lives with his wife and adult daughter in Jackson, MI.. He has published scholarly articles on Chaucer, Langland, the Pearl Poet, Shakespeare, and Milton. His self-published Collected Poems is online at Lulu.com. He also published a couple dozen short articles in religious journals. (Ed.: Dr. Higgs was the most important mentor during undergrad for the creator of this website, and his influence was inestimable; it's thrilling to welcome this dear friend onboard.)