‘Pastafarian’ pastor leads opening prayer before Alaska government meeting

A “Pastafarian” pastor on Tuesday gave an opening prayer on behalf of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster before a local government meeting in Alaska while wearing a colander on his head.

Barrett Fletcher, the pastor, noted the duties performed by the members of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly in his message, adding a few of them "seem to feel they can't do the work without being overseen by a higher authority.”

Fritz Creek area resident Barrett Fletcher gives the invocation before a Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting as a representative of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster at Homer City Hall in Homer, Alaska.

Fritz Creek area resident Barrett Fletcher gives the invocation before a Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting as a representative of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster at Homer City Hall in Homer, Alaska. (AP)

"So, I'm called to invoke the power of the true inebriated creator of the universe, the drunken tolerator (sic) of the all lesser and more recent gods, and maintainer of gravity here on earth. May the great Flying Spaghetti Monster rouse himself from his stupor and let his noodly appendages ground each assembly member in their seats," Fletcher reportedly said.

The Pastafarian invocation is the latest episode in a bizarre saga that stems from a state supreme court ruling allowing fringe religions to participate.

In 2016, the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly limited the invocations to “official organizations” with an “established presence on the Kenai Peninsula.” But in October, the Alaska Supreme Court ruled that policy unconstitutional. The borough changed its policy to allow anyone to offer invocations regardless of religion.

The Pastafarian invocation followed one in June from a Satanic Temple member who caused walkouts from the assembly chamber in Soldotna when she invoked "Hail Satan" in her opening prayer.

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The Flying Spaghetti Monster church, called FSM for short, was formed in 2005 as a response to the Kansas State Board of Education's hearings on evolution in schools. Its founder sent a letter about FSM to argue against teaching creationism in biology classes, the Homer News reported.

Church followers believe an invisible and undetectable monster made of spaghetti and meatballs created the universe after drinking heavily, and that his "noodly appendages" hold great power. Many label the movement as satire, but it is recognized as an official religion in some countries, the News reported.

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Fletcher, who started his chapter in Homer, on the lower Kenai Peninsula, concluded his opening prayer by asking the Flying Spaghetti Monster to provide each assembly member "satisfaction in the perception of accomplishment and allow them true relaxation and an ample supply of their favorite beverage at the end of this evening's work."

He then ended the prayer with: "Ramen."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.