A Pastafarian politician in Pomfret, New York, wore quite a porous hat to his oath of office last Thursday. Town Council member Christopher Schaeffer wore a colander to when Town Clerk Allison Dispense swore him into office. He explained to the Observer that he wore the pasta strainer because he is a minister with the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
Schaeffer told the Observer of Pastafarianism, "It's just a statement about religious freedom. It's a religion without any dogma." The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster wrote on its website that it first came into the mainstream in 2005.
The site states, "Pastafarianism is a real religion.
"Most of us do not believe a religion – Christianity, Islam, Pastafarianiasm – requires literal belief in order to provide spiritual enlightenment. That is, we can be part of a community without becoming indoctrinated. There are many levels of belief.
"A dogma is a set of principles laid down by an authority as truth, such as the doctrine of an organized religion."
Schaeffer also pointed out to the Observer that Pastafarians in Russia were persecuted for offending the Orthodox Church. "Somebody called the cops, and the cops came and arrested them," he said. Last year, a representative from the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster told Metro, "The most important principle of our religion is common sense. We have a number of commandments, some of them logical and some are not binding. The commandments are secondary things, the main thing is common sense."
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Though Schaeffer discussed his religious views with the Observer, he steered the conversation back toward serving the citizens of Pomfret. "Mostly, I'm just looking forward to making sure that the town is run smoothly and we meet the needs of all of our citizens," he said.