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Pub Gathering: Glimpses of the Divine in Film

Written by Mark Van Steenwyk : September 29, 2005

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For all ye Twin Citizens…Missio Dei has a Pub Gathering coming up, and you’re all welcome to come join us…

Film not only gives expression to the American ethos, it shapes it.  Film has shaped our ways of thinking on everything from
clothing fads to our view of God.  It is the latter that we’ll discuss
on October 5th. 

God’s treatment in film has shifted as our culture has shifted.  The
ways we think about God is depicted in many subtle (and not so subtle)
ways in film.  And the way God is depicted in film  has shaped our
thinking on God in many subtle (and not subtle) ways.  Join us at the Town Hall Brewery at 8pm on October 5th where we’ll discuss the "glimpses of the Divine in film." 

Questions for Reflection:

How have depictions of the divine shifted over the years?

Do you think a film can deal with spirituality and the Divine without showing evil?

What have horror films taught us about the Divine?

What movie has affected your thinking about God the most?

For sake of blog discussion…what are your answers to the questions above?

for further reading . . .

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Comments

3 Responses to “Pub Gathering: Glimpses of the Divine in Film”

  1. Van S on September 30th, 2005 11:49 am

    I think the movies that are best able to capture a sense of the divine are movies that are able to expertly explore human darkness. For example, one of my favorite movies is the Shawshank Redemption. In order for us to get a glimpse of redemption via Tim Robbins’ character, we are taken through a series of events that stress confinement and wickedness: years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, constantly under the threat of molestation, etc. As we see the character successfully overcome the evil around him, we understand a bit more the nature of hope and the human spirit–faith if you will. I realize that the movie depicts a rather humanistic faith–faith in one’s self–but it gives us a glimpse of some sort of divinity, albeit a humanistic one.

  2. len on October 3rd, 2005 12:23 pm

    Mark,
    read your article on Next-Wave this morning.. clear, imaginative and helpful, thanks! I’ve been wrestling lately with the concept of church.. and for me it has boiled down to “presence.” But we have been wrestling with the concept because we are attempting to “be” the church in a way that is not readily validated. SO.. thanks!

  3. Mark Van Steenwyk on October 3rd, 2005 12:58 pm

    I’m glad you found the article helpful, Len. :)

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