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Al Fike

Call it novel, but it's one man's mission to clean up comedy.

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Call it novel, but it's one man's mission to clean up comedy.

"People come purely out of curiosity sometimes," says Al Fike, 48, a full-time comedian and motivational speaker who resides in Richardson, Texas.

The answer is yes at the once a month Christian Comedy Night at Dallas-area comedy club, The Improv. Some 18 months after its beginning, the idea now has moved to other communities and churches, including White's Chapel United Methodist Church in Southlake Texas, a suburb of Fort Worth.

"On any given weekend in this area, you can hear great contemporary Christian music. That's a given. But where else could you go for Christian Comedy Night? There aren't a lot of opportunities out there for a good, clean laugh," Fike says.

Al Fike's Christian Comedy Night offers a venue where individuals can be entertained without vulgarity. Fike says "people want to laugh and feel good about what they're laughing at".

"People pop in, they may or may not be believers," he says. "But what we're presenting is an opportunity  a chance for them to have fun and for us to be a witness. And for those who use us as an outreach, it's a way to impact their circle of influence."

He jokes  candidly about his master of divinity degree from New Orleans Theological Seminary saying, "Now I can make candy!" Using a violin bow and handsaw, he plays the familiar strains of "Amazing Grace." He can't resist mentioning his Christmas CD, "Saw-lent Night."

"There are several cuts on the album," he pans.

Fike himself  picks the comedians who perform alongside him, and all must sign a code of conduct that governs their material and performances. Many have been with him for years,  yet others just a few months.

Vickie Ransom, known  as Ms. Vickie, is a regular performer. A single mom of four, she bounces between stories of life with teens and mind wandering during worship, dreaming that Mr. Right is in one of the pews.

Al  may be embarrassed of his foul-mouthed comedian counterparts, but he's not ashamed of his faith. Christian Comedy Night collects between 150 and 250, depending on the location, each who may pay up to 12 bucks a ticket.

All joking aside, Al ends every evening with a serious invitation for members of his audience to think about Jesus and get involved at church. Fike may be embarrassed of his foul-talking comedian friends, but he's not ashamed of his faith.

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