Finding a different message in "Passion’
Friday Columnist Andrew Gmerek gets some things right. In his tirade on Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ,” he confesses to be concerned at first that “all the time I’d lived as a cynic might have been wasted.”
I cannot comment on the wasted part, but Andrew is still a world- class cynic. The good part in being a cynic is that one does keep an open mind especially when it comes to religion.
The bad part of having an open mind is that it is dangerously close to an empty mind.
Mr. Gmerek said, “ growing up Catholic. I saw the same thing every Sunday. It was in church that I first learned why Christians pray on their knees. It’s because it’s easier to pick a man’s pocket if you’re at eye level with his belt.”
Many of us “grew up Catholic” in one of the world’s largest and oldest communities of religious faith founded by Christ and his Jewish apostles.
Most of us did not become pick pockets. Many Catholics have a world view that finds more than cynicism and money gathering to be the goal of “organized religion.”
This is what some of us got out of “The Passion of the Christ.”
We experienced in the drama the passion and reality of God’s love for us.
He sent his only son (and Mary’s only son) to die for our sins. “The Passion” portrays on the screen the extreme violence of man’s cruelty to man in order to show the great truth’s of Christ’s death on the cross.
The movie gives us a profound experience through the eyes and heart of his mother Mary, who was present at her son’s crucifixion. We can have the healing experience of Christ’s forgiving all of us for our sins even as he is hanging on the crucifix.
Despite all the violence, “The Passion of the Christ” is a great and wonderful work of art. It is a film about the boundless good and the infinite love present in the world. It is about God’s love for us, a mother’s love for her son, and the human love for each other that can come through our imitation of Christ’s love by our imitation of Christ as Christians.
It is sometimes very difficult to be a Christian and a Catholic, but it is forever more rewarding than being an open-minded cynic.
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