“Annual Ranking of Best U.S. Seminaries,” by Mason Binkley

Apr 25th, 2018 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

We here at Rank It All want to help you find the most direct path to Heaven. As sinners ourselves, we know the path to Heaven is fraught with distractions and perils, such as the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche, college-level science, and masturbation. So we’re thrilled to assist you with this soul-saving selection process.

We’ll release the full Annual Ranking of Best U.S. Seminaries next week. For now, behold the Top 5!

5. Seminary at Berkeley

Located in a charming pocket of Berkeley, California, this institution is within walking distance of coffee shops, art galleries, and parks. Students here value the nice weather and liberal perspective of the administrators and professors. Dean Liz Walters articulated the laissez-faire theology as follows:

God can be whatever you want Her to be. She can be an omniscient ruler of the universe who mingles in human affairs, or a detached introvert obsessed with math. Hell, God can even be the way the sun glows on a cornfield. I really don’t give a shit. It’s all about your individual journey of discovery, if that makes sense.

Oh yeah, that makes sense to us and we dig it!

4.The Mega-Seminary of Texarkana

Modeled on the “Gospel of Wealth” exemplified by the likes of Joel Osteen and Donald Trump, The Mega-Seminary of Texarkana has a sprawling campus with amenities that rival those of the most luxurious hotels in the world. Here, you’ll learn that God wants you to be as rich as possible, regardless of the consequences.

Dean Edmund Rich summed up this institution’s theology in his response to a question about his love of extravagant food. Here’s his response:

It’s not my fault that most people are forced to live paycheck to paycheck and buy food at public grocery stores. God blessed me with the ability to enjoy fresh scallops flown directly to me at the speed of sound after being caught off the coast of northeast Canada. God also blessed me with the ability to enjoy white truffle marinara sauce that costs $1,000 a bottle. By ‘enjoy,’ I mean bathing in forty jars of it once a month as my servants stand over me and drop golden flakes and handmade pasta into the bathtub. Did you even know that some people eat golden flakes? Well, I do. I eat them right up without a twitch or a twitter, because God lets me do it as a reward for my devotion to Him. Right now, there’s more gold inside of me than a Rolex factory. Guess what will happen to all that gold? I’ll shit it out, right into my heated toilet.

What can you say to that? Here’s what we can say: if you’re filthy rich and tired of people making you feel bad about it, this it the right place for you!

3. The St. Francis Seminary

Born in 1182, St. Francis of Assisi saw nature as a sacred reflection of God. He communicated with animals and considered them to be his brothers and sisters. He once gave a sermon to birds and, on another occasion, he convinced a wolf to stop terrorizing the locals of a small village.

At the St. Francis Seminary, nestled in the hills of Vermont, you’ll develop a rich appreciation of the environment and a sense of interconnectedness with God’s creatures. By the time you graduate, you’ll even be able to have conversations with monkeys! Just imagine the conversations you could have with monkeys about the divine!

2. The Tabernacle School of God

Iggily biggily arf arf mar-tar googlygoo zowzy humina humina humina humina snake bite!

That’s right! The folks here speak in tongues and try to charm rattlesnakes!

To access this seminary, you’ll need to drive into the Great Smoky Mountains, ride a horse for approximately twelve miles through dense woodlands, paddle across a river in a wooden raft, and then walk another three miles or so until you find your destination. When you see a rust-checkered yellow shack surrounded by weeping willow trees, you’ll know you’ve finally arrived.

The exceptionally high level of satisfaction at this seminary largely accounts for its elite ranking. The professors and students here spend most of their time in a euphoric trance, dancing joyously around a pit of venomous serpents while speaking a language only the Lord can understand.

Best of all, you won’t have to pay a penny. It’s the only tuition-free seminary in the country, and they’re always looking for new members!

1. The Divine Institute of Technology

For the eleventh straight year, this school has earned the top spot. The students benefit from state-of-the-art classrooms and STEM-heavy courses, like The Physics of Creationism, and Nano-Exorcisms. But what really makes this institution exceptional is its use of cutting-edge technology in the service of God.

On the first day of orientation, for example, each student receives a Guardian Angle®. Basically, it’s a hologram of a large angle that hovers over the student 24/7, watching every move and correcting any inappropriate behavior. A sophomore said, “With that thing staring at me, I wouldn’t dare smoke pot or have pre-marital sex in my dorm room, so I just read the Bible.”

But the newest invention has created the most hype around campus: the God Undies®. The goal of this product is sublimation, or the diversion of sexual energy to more appropriate ends, such as worship. Each student must wear a pair whenever he or she leaves the Control Zone. If the student exhibits any indication of sexual arousal, the God Undies® will deliver a shock to the genitals.

When asked about this, a freshman responded:

Attaining greatness is difficult. There’s a reason why our seminary has been consistently ranked number one in the country. I’m happy to make personal sacrifices to be a part of this amazing institution and to grow closer to God, even if that means mutilating my genitals, which I don’t actually need anyway.

There you have it, folks. Come back next week to see the full ranking of all 5,000 seminaries in the country!

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Mason Binkley works as an attorney in Tampa, Florida, where he lives with eight freshwater fish, two identical twin boys, and exactly one wife. His writing appears in various places, including McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Maudlin House, and Jellyfish Review. He is lonely on Twitter so feel free to say hello at @mason_binkley.

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