For moral support during World Youth “Day”, his Holiness has a small army of 700 Cardinals and Bishops, 200 clergy and 225,000 registered pilgrims. But of course, this wouldn’t amount to a truly spiritual experience without the opportunity to purchase some pious merchandise. And this, unfortunately, is where WYD08 falters.

Crikey is astounded to discover that the WYD range of religious products is a somewhat limited and far from breathtaking selection. Granted, you may buy a holy medal, a “funky” cross pendant and chain or even a lovely ceramic plate that shows off the dashing smile of Pope Benedict XVI himself … but we believe we can do better.

For those of you searching for a product that does your faith justice, look no further than the Crikey Buyer’s Guide to Essential WYD Accessories. Let’s go shopping.

  • Introducing the finest (and only) temporary stigmata tattoos on the market. Amaze your friends as they believe you are the second coming of the Messiah! Two sheets of open sores, gaping wounds, gashes, abrasions, and stitches ensure that you will look as good, if not better, than the real thing.

  • Tired of strategically placed sticky notes going unnoticed and unread? Invest in these quality “Commandments” stickies. Nothing is more authoritative than a grey piece of paper headed “Thou Shalt!”

  • Nunchuck. It’s a horrible pun reinvented into everyone’s secret fantasy. Simply load the spring action pistol with a nun figurine and then fire away at your enemies! Lock stock and two smoking nuns.

  • The Lock ‘n’ Load Jesus mug. Jesus never forced anyone to believe in him. Then again, he never owned an Ak-47…

  • Wash Away Your Sins soap bar. It’s scientifically proven to be twice as convenient as repentance.

  • Figurines? Try the hugely popular trio series. The Pope, The Christ and God Almighty himself. Each one sporting opposable arms and legs. Putting the fun back into fundamentalism and the laughter back into sectarian slaughter. Collect the set.

  • Jesus the astronaut. The 9-inch tall action figure that revolutionised creationism. It all makes perfect sense now! Jesus created the universe using his mystical astronaut powers! Georges Lemaitre eat your heart out.

  • Play Jesus. When you’re hard pressed for ideas on how to further waste your life, why not turn to the What Would Jesus Do? Christian game? A board game or a bored game? I guess you really do have to ask “what would Jesus do?”

So when heading over to Sydney for the World Youth Day, don’t settle for mediocrity. Instead take some time to research your purchases, compare prices even. Our list will not disappoint.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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