Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Correction: It's WAY Worse Than That

I made a mistake in last Sunday’s sermon. (My only one of the year, of course.)

In making a point about how we are often overwhelmed by all that is “wrong” with the world, I drew an analogy from the category of “sports” - kind of “current events,” too. I mentioned the newly signed contract between one Mr. Albert Pujols and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, which for some reason is on everyone’s minds around here these days.

Turns out my calculations were off. Way off!

Allow me to clarify.

According to the whiz-bang mathematical minds of the Campbell UMC staff, Pujols’ salary breaks down thusly:

+ $254 million over 10 years
+ $25.4 million per year
+ MINUS 45% for taxes and agent fees
+ $13,970,000 per year
+ 162 games in the regular season
+ $86,234.57 per game
+ 4 at bats per game
+ $21,558.64 per at bat

For further review:
(if only 3 at bats, he’ll earn $28,744.86 per at bat)
(if out of the lineup, he’ll earn $9,581.62 for every inning he warms the bench)

So, my figure yesterday was far, far too low.

The figure from Sunday’s sermon that IS accurate, though, is that it takes $300 per year to send a child to secondary school in Kenya, and a part of what the New Hope Initiative is trying to do is send kids from the Kibera slum in Nairobi on to get their secondary education with full scholarships, provided they pass the entrance exams.

And so, every time Albert Pujols comes to the plate next season, 71 children could receive these scholarships with the money he makes.

Seventy-one. With some spare change. Even if he strikes out.

Please understand that I am not bashing Albert Pujols personally. I’m sure he’s a very nice man. The intent is to point out just how out of whack our societal priorities are these days.

When the education of 71 kids living in one of the world’s biggest slums is equal to one single at bat of a Major League Baseball player, we have a problem. A global problem. A theological problem.

He has filled the hungry with good things,
and sent the rich away empty. (Luke 1:53)

So somebody tell me, how are we supposed to make sense of all this?