The FSM was first described in a letter by Bobby Henderson in 2005 written to protest the decision
of the Kansas State Board of Education to allow the teaching of intelligent design as an alternative to evolution in public school classes:
In that letter, Henderson satirized creationism by professing his belief that whenever a scientist carbon-dates an object, a supernatural creator that closely resembles spaghetti and meatballs is there "changing the results with His Noodly Appendage." Henderson argued that his beliefs were just as valid as intelligent design, and called for equal time in science classrooms alongside intelligent design and evolution. After Henderson published the letter on his website, the Flying Spaghetti Monster rapidly became an Internet phenomenon and a symbol of opposition to the teaching of intelligent design in public schools.
The Church is a legally recognized
religion in Poland and also in the Netherlands and New Zealand. In New Zealand, Pastafarian representatives have been authorized to celebrate weddings. In the U.S. on the other hand, a federal judge
has ruled that Pastafarianism is not a real religion. The Church
has its own gospels. Its creation myth is as follows:
The Gospel begins with the creation of the universe by an invisible and undetectable Flying Spaghetti Monster. On the first day, the Flying Spaghetti Monster separated the water from the heavens; on the second, because He could not tread water for long and had grown tired of flying, He created the land—complemented by a beer volcano. Satisfied, the Flying Spaghetti Monster overindulged in beer from the beer volcano and woke up hungover. Between drunken nights and clumsy afternoons, the Flying Spaghetti Monster produced seas and land (for a second time, accidentally, because he forgot that he created it the day before) along with Heaven and a "midgit", which he named Man. Man and an equally short woman lived happily in the Olive Garden of Eden for some time until the Flying Spaghetti Monster caused a global flood in a cooking accident.
In New Zealand,
Toby Ricketts and Marianna Young, were the first to tie the noodly knot. The ceremony was carried out by an ordained "ministeroni" on a chartered vessel decorated as a pirate ship with attendees dressed in pirate costumes at the scenic south island town of Akaroa. Instead of vows there are "terms of engagement." Young said that she did not want to get married any other way as a conventional marriage did not appeal to her. Karen Martyn, who was the ministeroni, was pleased that the ceremony constituted a formal recognition that the pastafarians were a church. While many of the practices involve humor and parody, they deny that they are purely satirical and are campaigning as a legitimate religion. Martyn said that many more pastafarian weddings were planned in New Zealand including some with same sex couples. Jeff Montgomery
, Registrar-General of Births, Deaths and Marriages in New Zealand said that his role was solely to apply relevant legislation: "That is one of the things that we celebrate in New Zealand is the great diversity of people who live here and the openness we have to different viewpoints." The FSM group has its own website.