Priests wielding squirt guns is quickly becoming my favorite thing to come out of this pandemic.
With the coronavirus apparently planning to stick around for a while, many have come up with creative solutions to try and keep life as normal as possible. Pretty much everything from adoptions to weddings to first dates have adapted to these pandemic times when social distancing has been the need of the hour. So when it came time to baptize their son, Wesley James, Mary and Kyle Nielsen from Norwood Young America, Minnesota saw no reason why they couldn't pull off a social distancing baptism that would also spread some much-needed laughs.
According to KTTC, the Nielsens had initially planned Wesley's baptism to take place at the end of March as an event that their friends and family could all attend. However, when churches were forced to shut their doors due to the coronavirus outbreak in the country, the couple and their pastor came up with a plan to conduct an at-home baptism. Since their extended family could no longer attend Wesley's special day due to the lockdown and social distancing parameters, the young boy's parents decided to stage a hilarious set up by which they could all remember the day. A set up which involved a very confused looking Wesley staring at a squirt gun-wielding pastor.
"When I had called my parents - er, my family - and told them they weren't going to be around... my brother had made the comment - with social distancing - the six feet - was the pastor going to use a water hose?" Mary explained. "If anything we're gonna use squirt guns. He's like, I want a picture of that. So when baptism day came, we did the real thing first of course, and then afterward we made sure to do the picture of the pastor holding a water gun and my husband just held Wesley out there and made sure we got a good photo op of that. Just to get some laughs and smiles to the family that couldn't be there."
The photo of Wesley's social distancing baptism quickly went viral on Facebook, with over 52k likes. When asked if they'd tell an older Wesley about the time when he became a viral sensation, Mary said with a laugh, "Oh yes, you got quite famous when you were only 2 months old, y'know. Nope, its gonna be an awesome memory to have. Definitely." I must say, priests wielding squirt guns is quickly becoming my favorite thing to come out of this pandemic.
Remember Father Tim Pelc and his parish' social distancing Easter celebrations? The 70-year-old also went viral on social media after photos of him blessing drive-through churchgoers with a holy water-filled squirt gun hit the meme sweet spot of the internet.
Speaking of his viral moment, he said: "The original idea was to do something for the kids of the parish. They were about ready to have an Easter unlike any of their past, so I thought, 'what can we still do that would observe all the protocols of social distancing?' You can't double-dip into the holy water container. I thought, what could I do that would keep the quarantine restrictions going and give kids the experience of Easter?" he explained.