For the record, Mr. Rupert: People whom you refer to as "ugly" are not only welcome at my church; many of us actually participate in the ministry there. If you were to visit my fellowship group tomorrow, the first greeter who would welcome you at the door is a very sweet-tempered but not-so-comely man who suffered permanent brain damage in a motorcycle accident several years ago, and then was further impaired by a severe stroke five years ago. He can't pronounce words very clearly, but he's the first person to show up every week (except when he's hospitalized with complications from his health problems). He's the official greeter at our main door, and he has a wonderful ministry of welcoming and encouraging other people, nearly all of whom have more good looks and natural ability than he hasbut only half his willingness to serve. He is greatly beloved and genuinely respected by everyone in the body.
Once you got past our greeter, one of the first things you would notice is that in every aisle (and scattered here and there across the back of the gymnasium where we meet), we have people who are confined to wheel chairssix to eight on a typical Lord's Day. Several of them are congenitally disfigured or severely disabled and are by no means physically attractive. Most of the rest of us aren't particularly handsome, either. But we'd welcome you no matter what you look likeeven if your besetting affliction is an ungodly obsession with looking "cool."
Note: The question of what constitutes appropriate attire and godly propriety for corporate worship is not even remotely related the issue of natural good looks. Mr. Rupert's inability (or unwillingness) to separate the two issues is the main reason he hasn't had anything to contribute to this discussion except loutish taunts and insults.
One last thing: Here's a sermon that answers Mr. Rupert's utterly inappropriate and offensive insinuations even more in depth.
That's all I have time for. I'm still busy with a different, very urgent, project in the real world. Far from "dodging" that other item that certain people have suggested I have "political" reasons to avoid, I'm just trying to clear the decks of other, higher priorities before unleashing a new wave of activity in the comment-threads here. In the meantime, our meta still isn't open for discussion about that. Again: the reason for the moratorium is not to avoid the issue, but to quell the proliferation of mile-long diatribes and unfriendly remarks from both sides until we have time to give it our full attention. Your patience is appreciated. And if you really, really need to post one of those long-winded harangues, start your own blog for that, and keep it out of our meta. OK?
And please don't neglect to attend church with your family this weekend. If you're nearby and don't mind fellowshiping with some non-glamorous but warm-hearted people, join me and Darlene in the gymnasium at Grace Church at 8:30 tomorrow morning.
See you there.