And here we are, back in the mess hall, where people are fighting about praying. Zach's trying to explain the meaning of Hanukah, but Colton just talks over him, earning himself a well-deserved bird. Zach in turn gets a smack from the (presumably Christian) girl next to him. Excuse me, but I didn't sign up to recap Kid Pogrom. In the Chapel, the Journal advises the Council to have a religious service, and leaves it up to them whether to hold it all together or in groups. Meanwhile, the "Jew Crew" (Eric's term, not mine) bonds in the mess hall while the Christian kids boast about their religion in a much more obnoxious and less catchy way, as is our tendency. The Council looks worried. They should be.
After credits and commercials, we find the Council getting ready to address the town, who don't look too thrilled that Journal-reading has just occurred. Seriously, it's never good news for them. In fact, I think the Council's approval ratings would soar if they ever said to the town, "The Journal suggested we do [unpopular suggestion of the week], but we say fuck it." The council brings up the idea of a religious service, and Laurel announces that they were going to try having one service at which people of different religions could speak. Absolutely no one else in the town seems to think that's a good idea. Olivia speaks up first, saying nobody's going to change their beliefs. Certainly not Olivia! And to prove it, she's already refusing to participate. So there. Mike tells her that's not what they're trying to do. Divad (11, from Georgia, a girl, whose name is not a typo), knows "for a fact" that having all religions in the same room is going to start arguments. "Would you put Democrats and Republicans in the same room together?" she interviews. "That's like putting Hindus and Christians in the same room together." Amazing: premise, analogy, conclusion, all completely wrong. It's like a rhetorical hat trick. Speaking of Hindus, Anjay interviews that the people warning against religious arguments are the ones who will start them. He seems to have a point there.
Sophia shares her opinion with the room that religion is historically a catalyst for war, and interviews that although she enjoys being Jewish, she's been having an "emotional crisis" lately about whether God exists. We can probably date that crisis to the day she met Taylor. Laurel doesn't see what the big deal is. Nine-year-old Alex speaks up and says that most religions have a lot of stuff in common, and they can focus on that instead of the differences. Olivia is particularly strident in the meeting, and interviews that she's so strong -- so very strong -- in her Christian beliefs that she doesn't want to hear about any others. Yes, that's strength for you. Anjay asks the room what's so wrong with "learning about other religions." Which would be a valid question, if they were proposing a discussion of comparative religions instead of an actual service. Everyone starts yelling, and Mike yells at everyone to shut up, and everyone actually shuts up. I can't believe how often that works. Have these kids really never been told to shut up before? I have more catching up to do than I thought. After listening to everyone's opinion, Mike announces that they're going to do it the Council's way anyhow. So there. As the meeting breaks up, he glowers at the crowd as though he's just daring someone to challenge his authority to tell them how to worship. Mike interviews that the Council makes the decisions, and the town has to deal with it. Well, I'm glad to see that he's trying to learn some new leadership skills, but it's a net negative, because he's learning them from Taylor.