Marketing Deal Announced

The following article first appeared on Episcopal Cafe’s The Lead. While we’re generally grumpy about the fact that this “cafe” still hasn’t delivered our double espressos, we’re impressed with their nose for news. They scooped every other media outlet to get this story, including the SEC. Tim and Scott did want to squash one rumor, however: they will not be changing the name to Lent McMadness.

Innovative Marketing Deal Announced

mcdonalds-sign-horizForward Movement has entered into an agreement with international fast-food giant McDonald’s to issue special Lenten Happy Meals featuring popular saints in what will be called “Holy Heroes Happy Meal.”

Starting this Holy Week, you can get an action figure of saints voted on by fans of Lent Madness, an annual project of Forward Movement of Cincinnati, Ohio.

“We feel this imaginative product spin-off will benefit both parties in countless ways,” said Scott Gunn, Executive Director of Forward Movement.

“Every Lent many thousands of Christians take to the brackets and vote their favorite saints until one and only one wins the Golden Halo,” says Jeff Stratton, President of McDonald’s USA. “We can’t imagine anything more inspiring than a Julia Chester Emery or Samuel Isaac Joseph Schereshewsky action figure in a child’s Happy Meal.”

“We got the idea to partner with McDonald’s by thinking about St. Lawrence who was roasted to death,” said the Rev. Tim Schenck, who first came up with the idea for Lent Madness. “After he was in the fire for a while, he called out ‘I’m done on the side, turn me over.’ We appreciate a guy who kept his sense of humor to the last. And McDonald’s does too.”

It is understood that this promotion will appeal to more than just children.

“We expect that many adults will snap these up as collector’s items,” said Gunn. “Many bookshelves in many clergy offices will no doubt be enhanced Printby their mere presence. Seminary texts that haven’t be touched for years will certainly be spiffed up by these characters!”

Celebrity bloggers will create the fun and informative texts that will accompany each meal printed on every box.

Predicting which saints to produce will be tricky. For example, Shereshewsky was voted out in early voting in this year’s brackets but after the production run was ordered. It was confirmed that past Golden Halo winners Frances Perkins and Mary Magdalene will be available. “While these figures won’t substitute for Lent Madness itself, we foresee a new level of saintly silliness as this partnership proceeds.”

With the corporate sponsorship, the only required change was to give the winner “Golden Arches” rather than the traditional Golden Halo. Gunn and Schenck agreed the change was worth it: “We’ve super-sized this one!”

60 Comments to "Marketing Deal Announced"

  1. Eugene Pagano's Gravatar Eugene Pagano
    April 1, 2014 - 2:11 pm | Permalink

    A April Fool’s joke!

    • Margaret Bivins's Gravatar Margaret Bivins
      April 1, 2014 - 4:18 pm | Permalink

      No doubt dreamed up by Saint Hilarius, chagrinned at not making the bracket.

  2. ted's Gravatar ted
    April 1, 2014 - 2:12 pm | Permalink

    April Fool, right?

  3. BAR's Gravatar BAR
    April 1, 2014 - 2:13 pm | Permalink

    And a Happy April Fool’s Day to you too. Check out the King’s College Cambridge, treble boys’ choir announcement. It’s good too.

  4. aleathia (dolores)nicholson's Gravatar aleathia (dolores)nicholson
    April 1, 2014 - 2:14 pm | Permalink

    Mr. Pagano…probably not a joke. My only concern is that a big bunch of men whose last names are all McDonald are in a Taco Bell commercial. SEC, have you no shame?

  5. Kitty Keith's Gravatar Kitty Keith
    April 1, 2014 - 2:15 pm | Permalink

    If this is not a joke, it is an appalling connection. McDonald’s is one of the worst offenders of employees rights. I trust it is a joke, a stupid one, but a joke.

  6. MaurineRuby's Gravatar MaurineRuby
    April 1, 2014 - 2:15 pm | Permalink

    April Fool? Are you kidding? This is a fantastic idea, guys! Sign me up! I’ll have a medium Harriet Bedell, 2 medium JSBachs, and one supersize Christina the Astonishing! Even though it’s MickieD’s, I feel the spirit of this offer singing, “Have it your way!”

  7. Anne C's Gravatar Anne C
    April 1, 2014 - 2:16 pm | Permalink

    So finally we can let go of making Fred Rogers a saint, and move on to a campaign for Ronald McDonald!

  8. April 1, 2014 - 2:17 pm | Permalink

    You’re a nut! And I say this with all the love in my heart.

  9. Karis's Gravatar Karis
    April 1, 2014 - 2:19 pm | Permalink

    I guess you guys don’t have to worry about ONE of the 7 deadly sins! 🙂

  10. Lucretia Jevne's Gravatar Lucretia Jevne
    April 1, 2014 - 2:21 pm | Permalink

    April Fools!!!

  11. Susan Pieper's Gravatar Susan Pieper
    April 1, 2014 - 2:28 pm | Permalink

    Good job!

  12. Claire of Quincy's Gravatar Claire of Quincy
    April 1, 2014 - 2:33 pm | Permalink

    Um… who is the patron saint of Fools? I for one will sing his/her praises.

  13. Madeleine Baier's Gravatar Madeleine Baier
    April 1, 2014 - 2:33 pm | Permalink

    Please tell me that this is a sick April fools day joke. I have worked for 3 different McNasty’s and they treat their workers like DIRT.
    Not only that, but the junk they sell barely qualifies as food. One manager I worked with ended up needing Double Bypass surgery as a direct result of his diet which consisted largely of the fat and calorie laden harbingers of death that McNasty sells to an unknowing public
    Guys. Please tell me it’s a joke.

  14. April 1, 2014 - 2:37 pm | Permalink

    I’m waiting for the punchline…. I think….

  15. Madeleine Baier's Gravatar Madeleine Baier
    April 1, 2014 - 2:38 pm | Permalink

    Ann C, I have no intention of giving up my quest to see Fred Rogers in the bracket. Ever. World without end , Amen AND Amen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Any questions? See above.
    Madeleine Baier

    • Miss Jan's Gravatar Miss Jan
      April 1, 2014 - 10:04 pm | Permalink

      I agree, McDonald’s overall doesn’t treat most employees very well, and the food is nowhere near healthy. And if this wasn’t an April Fool’s joke, I’d have a few choice words for a certain couple of priests! (And unlike being the official denomination of Major League Baseball, this is not a very good one.) A good one would have been “ESPN to replace March Madness coverage with Lent Madness coverage” or “Francis, Bishop of Rome, finally releases his Lent Madness bracket.”

      And I agree Fred McFeely Rogers belongs on a bracket, and not just over at NPRvPBS either! Sanctus subito!

  16. Patty Provot's Gravatar Patty Provot
    April 1, 2014 - 2:39 pm | Permalink

    Here I truly believed I was the queen of the April Fools joke. Now I realize I am a rank amatuer. At least you had me laughing myself silly.

  17. Kathy Schillreff's Gravatar Kathy Schillreff
    April 1, 2014 - 2:41 pm | Permalink

    I think the SEC has too much fin — or too much time on their hands

  18. Kathy Schillreff's Gravatar Kathy Schillreff
    April 1, 2014 - 2:41 pm | Permalink

    too much fun

  19. Linda T.'s Gravatar Linda T.
    April 1, 2014 - 2:43 pm | Permalink

    This is a perfect vehicle for all the saints who aren’t official yet – Mr. Rogers, Captain Kangaroo, Buffalo Bob . . . Perhaps we can get Barry Manilow to write a little jingle for each one.

    In the spirit of the day, perhaps we could have a competion between JS Bach and Moxy Fruvous.

    • Peggy's Gravatar Peggy
      April 1, 2014 - 2:49 pm | Permalink

      That would be way too hard a choice! Both Herr Bach & Moxy Fruvous can lift my spirits in minutes.

    • Pam Sten's Gravatar Pam Sten
      April 3, 2014 - 9:07 am | Permalink

      Can we add Mr. Ed?

      • Madeleine Baier's Gravatar Madeleine Baier
        April 3, 2014 - 9:12 am | Permalink

        Why not? “Oh wilbur”…………

  20. Judi Putnam's Gravatar Judi Putnam
    April 1, 2014 - 2:48 pm | Permalink

    Glad to celebrate the day with everyone.

  21. Merrilee's Gravatar Merrilee
    April 1, 2014 - 2:49 pm | Permalink

    Scott, you are taking the Big Mac Bridge too seriously. It is over the Ohio River, not Forward Movement. But close.

  22. Chris Steinmetz's Gravatar Chris Steinmetz
    April 1, 2014 - 2:50 pm | Permalink

    I think St. Lawrence would heartily approve.

  23. Cush's Gravatar Cush
    April 1, 2014 - 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Made my day — what a hoot!

  24. Rev. Lucy Porter's Gravatar Rev. Lucy Porter
    April 1, 2014 - 3:06 pm | Permalink

    It didn’t take me long to catch on, after all this IS April 1! Very clever!

  25. Pat (the Celt)'s Gravatar Pat (the Celt)
    April 1, 2014 - 3:12 pm | Permalink

    A few years ago, on April 1, 2008 the Episcopal Church became the official denomination of Major League Baseball. Thanks for keeping up this great tradition of connecting our beloved denomination with these great cultural icons!

    • Ann W.H.'s Gravatar Ann W.H.
      April 1, 2014 - 6:38 pm | Permalink

      Pat (the Celt), the official MLB denomination? So much for “Damn Yankees,” then.

      Now I really want a Frances Perkins action figure.

  26. Tom and George McFarland's Gravatar Tom and George McFarland
    April 1, 2014 - 3:17 pm | Permalink

    Checking the date on this posting for confirmation of the exciting new.

  27. Adrienne Jacobsen's Gravatar Adrienne Jacobsen
    April 1, 2014 - 3:18 pm | Permalink

    and a Happy April Fools Joke to you, too

  28. Linda Leong's Gravatar Linda Leong
    April 1, 2014 - 3:27 pm | Permalink

    You guys keep me laughing!

  29. Brigid Courtney's Gravatar Brigid Courtney
    April 1, 2014 - 3:32 pm | Permalink

    Aw ! Gotta be an April Fools…. a good creative one at that!

  30. Verdery's Gravatar Verdery
    April 1, 2014 - 3:34 pm | Permalink

    While I’m very glad you folks didn’t *really* sell out, I confess I was all set to go get a Frances Perkins Happy Meal.

  31. ConnieHJ's Gravatar ConnieHJ
    April 1, 2014 - 3:44 pm | Permalink


  32. Ruth Eisenhowr's Gravatar Ruth Eisenhowr
    April 1, 2014 - 4:00 pm | Permalink

    This was actually pretty tasteless, even for you guys, and for awhile really frightening. Happy Fool’s Day to you, you win.

  33. Day Smith Pritchartt's Gravatar Day Smith Pritchartt
    April 1, 2014 - 4:10 pm | Permalink

    I guess that finding saintly kitsch will now be a piece of cake.

  34. Another Peg's Gravatar Another Peg
    April 1, 2014 - 5:06 pm | Permalink

    “You deserave a saint today, so get on your knees and pray…”

  35. Another Peg's Gravatar Another Peg
    April 1, 2014 - 5:07 pm | Permalink


  36. Barbie's Gravatar Barbie
    April 1, 2014 - 5:35 pm | Permalink

    And the Golden Arches are at the entrance to Heaven. April Fool – they are at the entrance to Hell.

  37. Chris carey's Gravatar Chris carey
    April 1, 2014 - 5:40 pm | Permalink

    Great ideA for April 1. Just think of the wringing of hands and necks that would occur if it were true!

  38. Nanese's Gravatar Nanese
    April 1, 2014 - 5:54 pm | Permalink

    Happy April Fool’s Day. Well played!

  39. Robert Kent's Gravatar Robert Kent
    April 1, 2014 - 6:39 pm | Permalink

    Lent Madness is such hot stuff maybe next year you can partner with Gold’s Horseradish and have an action figure in every jar!

  40. Bob Mayer's Gravatar Bob Mayer
    April 1, 2014 - 7:46 pm | Permalink

    And a Happy All Fools Day to all of you.

    • Madeleine Baier's Gravatar Madeleine Baier
      April 1, 2014 - 8:44 pm | Permalink

      Snicker snort chortle haw haw haw!!!! Back at ya.

  41. Lyn Zolman's Gravatar Lyn Zolman
    April 1, 2014 - 7:48 pm | Permalink

    This sounds like an April Fools prank

  42. Jane C's Gravatar Jane C
    April 1, 2014 - 8:00 pm | Permalink

    If I can’t really order a Blessed Saintly Happy Meal I’ve very happy to have been introduced to Moxy Fruvous.

  43. Jane C's Gravatar Jane C
    April 1, 2014 - 8:01 pm | Permalink

    Another oop. I’m not I’ve. Spellchecker has been playing jokes all day.

  44. Mike Phillips's Gravatar Mike Phillips
    April 1, 2014 - 8:05 pm | Permalink

    Remind me not to play poker with you — on April 1 or any other date!

  45. Emily Joyce's Gravatar Emily Joyce
    April 1, 2014 - 8:12 pm | Permalink

    April Fool! But that would be funny!

  46. Patsy's Gravatar Patsy
    April 1, 2014 - 8:41 pm | Permalink

    Good one, SEC.

  47. Anthony's Gravatar Anthony
    April 1, 2014 - 8:56 pm | Permalink

    My kids love this! My son says “Seriously, totally April Fools!!!!!!!!!!!!”

  48. Donald Lowery's Gravatar Donald Lowery
    April 1, 2014 - 10:45 pm | Permalink

    You all are crazy. I never thought of St. Lawrence in the same synaptic firing as McDonald’s. It makes sense. I think you have found the patron Saint of fast food and grilling out.
    I am prouder than ever that my surname is an Anglicized derivation of a Gaelic derivation of Lawrence/Laurence. We were the people who lived by St. Lawrence Church. Doubtless we were in charge of parish picnics and bar-b-ques, which in my part of the south is a description for pork, beef or chicken, slow cooked over a hard wood fire and anointed with a savory sauce, not a verb for grilling out. For my California cousins, however… oh well.
    McDonald’s Go Bragh.
    Donald of the O’Loughery+

  49. LauraG's Gravatar LauraG
    April 2, 2014 - 12:58 am | Permalink

    Absolutely great!!! Thanks for the best laugh on April Fools day in many years. You guys are the best.

  50. aleathia (dolores)nicholson's Gravatar aleathia (dolores)nicholson
    April 2, 2014 - 9:08 am | Permalink

    You mean it was a joke? I can’t get a McScheresCHEWsky burger with fries to go? Rats!

    • Donald Lowery's Gravatar Donald Lowery
      April 2, 2014 - 7:38 pm | Permalink

      An April Fools joke? I wanted a McMaryMagdalene Strawberry Milk Shake to go with my McScheresCHEWsky burger and fries. I am crushed. I am with you aleathia!

Comments are closed.