Tammy Faye Bakker Messner (March 7, 1942 - July 20, 2007), the irrepressible doyenne of Television Ministries, was called home by Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ after a lifetime devoted to spreading the Good News.
The Bakker YearsEdit
Among Mrs. Bakker Messner's most notable early achievements include her years as wife and fellow puppeteer with Jim Bakker on Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network, followed by her years as wife and puppet to Jim Bakker on the PTL Club. This was followed by the Reverend Bakker's internment for fraud, revelations of his marital infidelity, and the loss of the luxurious family and dog houses.
As Long As I Know How To LoveEdit
The total collapse of the PTL empire brought some hard times for Tammy Faye. What would she do, without an outlet for her ministerial gifts? How would she be able to function, without Jim?
As the tears welled up and the mascara caked, she was, of course, at first afraid. She was petrified. Kept thinking she could never live without Jim by her side. But she spent so many nights thinking how he did her wrong, that she grew strong. She learned how to carry on.
Yes, you would think Tammy Faye would have crumbled. Given the indignity, the shame, the sheer magnitude of ridicule to which she was exposed, you would expect her to just lay down and die. But she didn't. No, Tammy Faye survived. Because she knew she still had all her life to live. She still had all her love (and, more importantly, all of Jesus's love) to give. And she'd survive. She would survive.
Tammy Faye and the GaysEdit
Crucial to Tammy Faye's survival over the years has been her close relationship with the homosexual community. Almost exclusively amongst Fundamentalist Christian Televangelists with huge mass audiences - okay, make that exclusively - Tammy Faye insanely embraced the gays, seeming to see them as fellow human beings as much as sinners bound straight for hell. While some gay naysayers suggested that Tammy was just a Diva trying to hitch a ride, others said this was precisely what they loved about her. Still others valued her work to bring attention to AIDS before the disease reached national prominence, and her continued work on behalf of AIDS victims throughout the rest of her life. But mostly, the trannies loved her for her style. I mean, my god, the lady was on The Surreal World.
After the Laughter, After the TearsEdit
On another sad note, sources close to the Lord report some concerns about Heaven's ability to keep Tammy Faye in mascara, and suggested that the Southern United States might want to prepare for an "inexplicable wave of Avon Lady raptures" at some point in the near future.