The Rose Parade, Pt. 2: More stuff you didn’t see on TV


The television cameras missed the  best part of the parade on New Year’s Day; they didn’t show you the truth of what was going on. The Network Executives who make the decisions behind the scenes want to keep you in the dark of what really happens at the Tournament of Roses Parade, when those who love Jesus are unleashed on the teeming, spectating throngs. (Please read Part 1 by clicking here.)

I know the reason why they would rather show you beautiful floats like this one…

…instead of showing you the crazy Christians running into the middle of the parade route handing out Gospel tracts to the float “wavers.”

But are those Christians really so crazy? The network television people must think so, because you aren’t seeing this on TV: This man in the jester hat liked the way I was handing out Gospel tracts and let me sit alongside him in the front row. (People camp overnight for this type of parade-side seat, y’ know.)

In fact, he liked it so much, he joined me in passing out tracts, too.

Just look at the marching man’s reaction when he got his Giant Money tract.

You didn’t see that on TV, did ya? I know why…

The jester man was really into it now; I couldn’t stop him. When the Steven Spielberg look-a-like guy came by, he went for it!

The parade came to a stand-still. Photo-op! I grabbed my oldest daughter and posed with the happy tract-recipient.

Why hand out tracts to people on floats?

Just think: One person on a float gets a Gospel tract and waves it around. Others on the float see it; they want one; then they wave theirs around. Someone reads the back, believes, and repents while on the float. They are so filled with joy that their sins are forgiven—all their lying, all their thieving, all their lustings and blasphemies—that they… they…start to preach from the float! Thousands hear them on the street. Spectators repent… and… and… REVIVAL STARTS!

Hey! It could happen. Didn’t that day, though.

Still, the Mayor of Pasadena got one.

And the Grand Marshall, Cloris Leachman, got one, too!

She did, she really did! Unfortunately, our cameraman missed the shot. Here’s what happened: She grabbed ithe Giant Money tract, looked at it with confusion, held it up in the air, then paraded on down the street, like nothing ever happened. Did anyone see that on TV? Noooooooooo!

I fired our cameraman.

Then there was the McDonald’s float! Surely when Ronald McDonald got a Giant Money tract he would jump for joy, ushering many Lil’ chil’n into the Kingdom, right?

I yelled to my 7-year-old, Laurel, “Let’s get a tract to Ronald!” We rushed out together. She stretched out her cute little hand to give him a tract, but what did Ronald say to her? “Don’t get on the float while its moving!” Say what?

What kind of Ronald McDonald was this? And why was he wearing sunglasses? See if we ever eat at McD’s again. (Actually, since seeing “Supersize Me” we swore the restaurant off.) Still, a grouchy Ronald McDonald? We’re going to Jack-in-the-Box.

Of course, you would never, ever, ever see that on TV. Want to know why? Here’s the reason. Ready? Of course you are. The reason you would never, ever, in a million years see all this crazy, nutty, Christian Gospel-tract-handing-out-preachin’-to-the-bleachers-worker-stuff is… all the camera crews and commentators are four and half miles before us, at the start of the parade. No Big Network Honcho would ever have his people at the end of a parade route where we were. Where the kooky Christians with Gospel tracts are. Never.

But you have to know another secret; it’s what happens at the end of every Rose Parade, and I guarantee that you’ve never seen this unless you’ve been there in person. The TV personnel could actually show you this, yet chooses not to. On purpose.

Following the tow trucks, police cars, and emergency vehicles—behind all the large manly trucks that signify the end of the parade are the… Sign Guys! Yes! Sign Guys.

Tens of Sign Guys! Tens and tens of Sign Guys with banners held high! They’re at every Rose Parade, at the end of the line, as if they are actually part of the festivities, marching along, oblivious and proud.

Now those guys are really nuts!

***Click here for part 3 where you can see a montage of us preaching!***

(Read about “how to do” a parade, and our encounter with the police at the Hollywood Santa Parade here.)


  1. Hey Steve. Glad you are zealous for the Lord and out there reaching the lost. I have one question for you. From the little that I have read on your blog, you seem to be against banners and signs. Why?

  2. Hi Kerrigan,

    I’m not against banners and signs, it’s just not my thing. And, it seems that most “Sign Guys are not in an organized church.

    Here’s a post that I wrote to a “sign Guy” at the School of Biblical Evangelism:

    I do appreciate what you are doing. It’s not something that I will do (I think that law and gospel need to be presented), but I’m glad that you feel called to do it.

    One thing: Even you admit to not being in an organized church apart from a few families, which lends credence to Ray Comfort’s comment that most “Sign Guys” aren’t in a church. Yes, where two or more are gathered, etc., (except that isn’t what Jesus was speaking about in context with that passage). Nevertheless, the issue I have with those in “Do-it-yourself” home groups is the lack of accountability and structure. No elders, or any of the basics that Paul wanted in his churches as he instructed Timothy.

    So… I guess it would be more prercise to say that most Sign Guys are not in organized churches. Hmmmm….?

  3. Kerrigan:

    Also, I’m having a little bit of fun, if you don’t mind…
    Here’s another “Sign Guy” post with links:

  4. Hey Pastor Steve,

    Just wanted to say, keep these posts coming!! I find your site tremendously encouraging as I endeavor to witness.


  5. I guess I would ask some of the same questions. Where does the Bible say that you must go to a building called a “church” once or twice a week? I am involved in a home fellowship that is probably the best Church that I have ever been a part of. I have been a Senior Pastor, Associate Pastor, Youth Pastor, Sunday School Teacher, Worship Leader, etc. at MANY different “regular Churches”. I’m sorry, but I don’t see those “Churches” as any more “official” or “Biblical” then what I am apart of. I don’t forsake the fellowship of the brethren and we do meet at least once a week. When we do meet, we worship the Lord in song, have a time of prayer and have some kind of teaching from God’s Word. This is more than I can say for most “Churches” that I have been a part of. Most “Churches” don’t even pray together, except for about 2-3 minutes each service. As far as leadership is concerned, if we were to grow numerically to the size that we needed “official leadership”, we would do something about that. Otherwise, at this point, there is no need for it. There is great accountability in our home fellowship and great fellowship! We spend the whole day together and know each other intimately! This is far more Biblical than what I see that passes for a “church” these days. I’m sorry brother, but I’m a “sign and banner guy” and am IN fellowship. Maybe not the type of “fellowship” that Ray and you are referring to, but I am definitely in BIBLICAL fellowship from what I can see in the Bible. God Bless…

  6. Wow! This is defenitley an encouragment, for those of us who go to pep rallies in school, around our homes, and for other things, If you can do this at the Rose Day Parade to people in floats. Then a question and a challenge i have for everyone, why wont you do this at a school pep rally? There are tons of people and you cant get in trouble! Trust me, ive passed out a few thousand in the last month. Everywhere at my school, including teachers. Challenge yourself and pray about it!! Then go for it!!

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