BREAKING NEWS: The SEC Denies Involvement In Scandal

March 20, 2014
Scott Gunn

Breaking news alertThe Supreme Executive Committee of Lent Madness categorically denies any involvement with bribery for places in the bracket of saints. Despite all accusations to the contrary, Louis of France earned his way into the 2014 bracket, and the SEC did not accept payment for favorable placement.

This so-called "Payment for Placement" scheme has rocked the foundation of  the world's most popular online Lenten devotion.

Some accusers have pointed to the St. Louis Gateway Arch as possible evidence of corruption. As everyone knows, the SEC consists of Fr. Tim Schenck and Fr. Scott Gunn, infamously known to be archnemeses. Can the SEC help it if there's a major American city named after one of the contestants? So what if we arch-rivals happen to like the Arch?

st johns clydesdale

This photo, sent by an anonymous source, was taken at St. John's, Hingham. So what if a clydesdale was there?

The Rev. Tim Schenck indignantly proclaimed, "Hey, Louis was a failed crusader, just like these bogus accusations are a failed crusade to tarnish the SEC." He continued, "Just because I like beer doesn't mean I have accepted a large gift from Anheuser-Busch in the form of small, unmarked kegs."

Known as a non-beer-drinker, the Rev. Scott Gunn stated, "For the record, Anheuser-Busch has nothing on me. And just because I love licorice does not mean I'm in [St. Louis candy maker] Switzer's pocket, even though they make the best licorice in America."

The SEC chooses the bracket at its annual spring boondoggle retreat. While nominations are accepted, bribes are discouraged. "Everyone gets into the bracket on her or his own merit, not because of sponsorships," said Gunn. Schenck added, "And there's no way we're going to accept free cardigans or sneakers to put Fred Rogers in." Gunn, seeking the last word on this subject, blurted out, "We see eye to eye on this one. No one gets into the bracket unless some church has put them on a calendar of commemorations, and even then a few individuals are going to have to be content in the Land of Make Believe rather than the Lent Madness bracket. That goes doubly for King Friday."

King Louis of France, or St. Louis, as he's known, is obviously the patron of the eponymous city. The Dean of Christ Church Cathedral in St. Louis, the Very Rev. Mike Kinman, seeking to distance himself from this episode said, "Like Sergeant Schultz, I know nothing!" Kinman added, "Those clowns [the SEC] run this thing on their own and are apparently accountable to no one. The Cathedral is too busy doing important stuff like betting for charity to be involved in their little scheme."

The SEC concluded its statement with this advice: "If you want to follow the money on brackets, why aren't you looking at Warren Buffet's billion-dollar bracket bet? And if you ask him about that, find out if he wants to invest in Lent Madness."


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45 comments on “BREAKING NEWS: The SEC Denies Involvement In Scandal”

    1. ditto was supposed to go in the reply about mr. rogers. the SEC has pull- get him on a calendar...please.

  1. I am shocked, SHOCKED, that there has been an accusation of misconduct directed at the SEC concerning the placement of King Louis in the bracket of saints. I am even more shocked, and mildly chagrined, that in the vigorous defense of your Supreme honor, you maligned the saintly King Friday. Be careful here. I hear the Standing Liturgical Commission has already received an application to consider adding Friday's name to the liturgical calendar. I also hear that the application has received wide support through out the Church. (Well, okay, a letter poured in. But it's early.) No doubt about it- he's a rising star. And he owns a few Clydesdales. Just sayin...

  2. Which Louis would this be?? There were some unsavory ones in the gaggle of Louises...:o)

  3. My all time favorite King Friday moment occurred when the puppet said to real life dancer Tommy a Tune, "I've always been rather light on my feet myself."

  4. Oh this is delightful! Cadigans and cardigans as they relate to Mr. Rogers. And so I remember as the years role by that Fr Charles Cesaretti, Chair of the Council at 815, (I was UN-NGO at the time) sat in HIS cardigan and collar and non-chalantly mentioned (i must have been talking about my kids) that Fred Rogers was a very best friend of his.
    Both could be included on our list! Small world. Funny coincidence-- if in fact there is such a thing. Let's put on our cardigans and have a parade!

  5. My great uncle was a senior VP of Switzer and my uncle worked for AB. We always had licorice and Bud in the house (it was given free to employees with their paychecks, back in the day!) Now, if a coffee company, other than Folgers or Maxwell House, had been involved in this scheme, I might be more inclined to believe the bribery charges.

  6. Who is Scott Gunn? Why is he hiding from the TV cameras? Why is he at an undisclosed location in NY?
    Congressional Investigation needed.

  7. St. Louis is my hometown. I was baptized in the Church of St. Michael and St. George and still attend. Switzer's IS the King of Licorice. My resume includes time spent at AB (not just drinking the free beer when taking a tour but working) and I can see your attraction to the Arch.
    What I can promise the SEC is that whatever I know about this scandal, my lips are sealed... as long you will consider including Mr. Rogers in the bracket when he is declared a Saint by the Association of TV Evangelists. Rumor has it that will be quite soon. Lacking this promise, certain information may make it's way to the media. Not a threat; just stating facts.

  8. We have to convince some Church to add Fred Rogers to it's calendar -- he was a Presbyterian, and they don't keep a calendar of holy people. I don't understand why the Episcopal Church hasn't included him . . . there are certainly other non-Episcopalians on our liturgical calendar. But alas, this is one of the many things about which the Episcopal Church has not consulted me.

  9. We are too cool to fall for this obvious ploy for bribes! This isn't exactly "House of Cards" (although I'm sure the puns will begin any moment now).
    As if we didn't have enough scandal in years past with the tyranny of the majorities generated through Big Pineapple and super-PACS funded by wealthy Mt. Holyoke alumna. And the vote between Mary and Antony was so heated and close, I am surprised we have not yet heard complaints about fraud!

  10. Oh my, licorice was mentioned. We in Charleston, West Virginia equate that with poisoned drinking water. The Lord, I believe, doesn't like that!

  11. Sister Mary, my guess is that we will need to wait a couple more decades to see if Fred Rogers' witness will hold up over time. I don't see why not, however there will be those who will not support him, because he was a TV personality or because ministering to the inner lives of children is not seriously regarded (one may speculate on how many evils are caused by neglect or trauma in early childhood). Just because something is said simply, or to someone younger than yourself, that does not mean that the message is remedial, and you are advanced. Maybe if he were Episcopalian certain members of the SEC would be more open. I will save my cardigan bribes fir General Convention 2042.
    There is a curious disconnect because like Thomas Merton, Fred Rogers proclaimed that each person could become the person God made them to be. Aelred was all about the "spiritual friend", and Mr. Rogers taught us how to make friends and stay in relationship and live in community (not easy or that natural, especially for adults). He modeled how to love someone just as they are, and helped millions receive and give that love. MANY of the saints this year were musicians, Fred Rogers was a musician. Many were ordained, Fred was ordained. Many were clear about serving an underserved population, or changing our awareness to make us more inclusive, check, check. Some took on the powerful establishment...have you seen how Fred converted that mean old Congressman when he spoke at the hearings about PBS funding? The effect he had on the world cannot be seen in tangible terms,but if his influence is still felt years from now, then I would say he is a very worthy candidate for Holy Women, Holy Men. It might be nice to see him combined with someone else, like Sophia Cavalletti, or Maria Montessori, who transformed the world because of the way they saw children.

  12. What is going on with the SEC??? First they tell us that Adam Thomas and David Sibley are two different people (But look at them! Even the glasses are the same!), now there's this unsavory scandal business! It's time for the Presiding Bishop to step in!!!!

  13. I Wish I'd just said "Ditto Madeleine". But of course it wasn't up when I started typing with my thumbs. Wow. Jeesh. Don't get ME started, apparently.(cuckoo, cuckoo, it's time for bed) all apologies for the lecture. I'm giving up reading Lent Madness posts outside the hours of 7:30-10:30 am starting tomorrow!

  14. And I swear off mentioning FR on this site ever again. ( You can stop cheering now)

    1. Yes! Mr. Rogers was a holy man who ministered to a group often ignored : young children.

    2. Molly, don't stop! I think the most meaningful thing I've read thus far during Lent Madness was the quote from Fred Rogers posted on his birthday. He may have aimed his television show at children but I would guess I'm not the only parent who was helped to focus on the truly essential aspects of parenting by watching the show with their kids: the sense of wonder at God's creation, the need to respect every person, etc. Surely the SEC will re-lent someday!

  15. Well, I hope you're satisfied now that the Fred Rogers crowd has gone ballistic. I tried to warn you. Now, I've figured out how to deal with this by way of a truce. Remember SNL with Eddie Murphy doing Mr. Rogers neighborhood? "He-wo, boys and guls !!!" Put him in in FR's place and let's go to the neighborhood !!!

  16. Once again, folks elsewhere are maligning the SEC just because they are jealous of its pre-eminence. That's really not fair, because this year it was the ACC that won the Nat'l Championship, to-wit, the incredibly fantastic FSU Seminoles. Of course, all of the Nat'l Champions in recent years have in fact been from the southeast U.S. (although FSU = ACC), so it just goes to show you that God & all the Saints are fans of and take a hand in old school Southern football. Oh, wait, you mean SEC is not the Southeastern Conference? You means its TWO PRIESTS running this thing instead of the Coaches from the Auburn Tigers, Alabama Crimson Tide, Georgia Bulldogs, Florida Gators, LSU Tigers, Kentucky Wildcats etc., etc.? Did that whole Tebow genuflecting on the field scenario cause us to be abandoned by the truly beatified? Oops! Nevermind.

  17. FYI Sister Mary W. et al. the Rev. Fred McFeely Rodgers worshipped at an EPISCOPAL parish when at his summer home. Now will someone be my neighbor and tell me the process to get SCLM/GenCon/whomsoever to put him in HWHM? I'm serious!

  18. I love this stuff. Thank you for making my very stuffed work day today begin with a laugh.

    I live only 90 Miles North of St. Louis - Hannibal - Saint Mark Twain, anyone? 😉 and can see the possible roots of scandal. It IS St. Louis' 250th anniversary this year.....perhaps the St. Louis Visitors Commission took it upon themselves to en$ure that St. Louis was in the bracket as a brilliant guerrilla marketing scheme to promote their anniversary year! The PLOT THICKENS!!!!!

  19. In this blessed and holy season, I hate to dredge up bad memories but wasn't the arch to be in the true western side of the state (Kansas City), but due to politics and money it was placed elsewhere (St. Louis)? Is there a pattern?

  20. I will continue to uphold Fred Rogers until the sec relents, or a sheet is pulled up over my face. Whichever comes first!!!

  21. Hi Linda! Ah memories. King Friday always got on my nerves, but did you notice that Lady Elaine Fairchild always pushing Friday's buttons? You go girl!! I too got a chuckle on the "letter pouring in"