Hoverboards earned a reputation as maybe the most dangerous gift for kids this holiday season, given their penchant for catching fire and inducing nasty spills.
But they’re apparently also perilous for Catholic priests who get it into their heads it might be a good idea to use one during Christmas Eve Mass — while the congregants are shooting video on their smartphones.
The priest in this case is in the Philippines and has not been named, even though the video has gone viral.
But the Diocese of San Pablo knows who he is and on Tuesday (Dec. 29) announced that the pastor “was wrong” and has been suspended because the Mass “is the church’s highest form of worship. Consequently, it is not a personal celebration where one can capriciously introduce something to get the attention of the people.”
The diocese said the priest admitted his mistake, apologized, and “will be out of the parish and will spend some time to reflect on this past event.”
The pastor got on the hoverboard and went up and down the nave to greet congregants before the final blessing of the Mass, singing “May the Good Lord Bless and Keep You” — a 1950 pop song that for many would be as liturgically incorrect as any modern toy.
Still, you have to hand it to the priest: He seems to maneuver the hoverboard better than many kids. And the parishioners seem delighted.
But nothing can inflame Catholics more than liturgical innovations — just Google “clown Mass” if you want a sense of how intense arguments can get in the U.S. — and this cleric’s Christmas Eve effort was destined to end badly.