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Below are the 5 most recent journal entries recorded in Religion and Film's LiveJournal:

Monday, April 23rd, 2007
1:15 pm
New Site!!!
The Blog has been transferred to www.ReligionAndFilm.com

Please feel free to visit it, as it's been completely redone (Search engine, Topic related links, Time/Date archiving, domain name, Video Blog, etc).

My website gets reviewed this Tuesday, so wish me luck!

Also thank you all for your comments!!!

-Leonard O Goenaga
Sunday, April 1st, 2007
1:33 pm
A Line in the Sand...
The Issue of Homosexuality, Christianity, Love, and Judgement.
By Leonard O Goenaga

Movie:The Last Year (Journal 9, 3/25/07-3/31/07)

Before I continue in my journal, I might as well take a moment to express my opinion on the acting in The Last Year:


It was GOD awful (Hahah, I tried to make that into a pun). However, I didn’t watch the film in a homophobic, biased, or immature manner. I personally felt the acting and story dragged on, and continued to beat the message of universal love. It was completely predictable, and the scenes lacked any form of emotional appeal. The only scenes I found worthy in ALL of The Last Year were the ones involving the exchange of scripture between the gay students and the other characters. I could have watched these scenes and spared my mind the mental shrapnel that was the rest of the film, but as a good student I watched it from beginning to end. These scenes in The Last Year held the core idea’s behind the film: That as Christians, we tend to overlook that universal love Christ talked about in exchange with the judgment of sinners.

I can see the problem The Last Year addresses. I see how ‘Christian Cooks’ sprinkle life with biblical sugar, and try to place life in their Christian-cake-molds. Being Christian is completely different (and difficult!), and as depressing as it is for me to say it, some Christians use Christianity to their favor. In no ways am I hinting at this being a majority (I believe it’s an extreme minority), but there are those individuals who call themselves Christians because it makes life easier and brings that social environment. One of my greatest complaints against Christian churches is that Christians manage to cluster with other Christians. Here we have a dying world, desperately in need of that love Christ displays, and his body here on earth (us) is keeping to it’s own kind and restricting it’s output of love. We (Christians) are here on earth to be used by God to love others. The 1st Great Commandment calls for us to love God, and then the 2nd Great Commandment calls for us to love others. I believe you can summarize Christ’ message (Besides atonement and forgiveness of sin) with these two principles. These maintain an authority above anything else in Christianity. If you were to truly love everyone, you’d be in fulfillment of all laws and commandments. Yet how, as Christians, could we do that when we cluster together in our social groups (The Jocks are a good example)? I remember walking out of church and seeing all the little circles of about 5-10 people talking to themselves, and wondering where I belonged. Which group would I walk up to and talk to? I then matured in my faith, and began asking myself why we were standing there talking amongst ourselves to begin with? Why weren’t we, the zealous youth of Gods kingdom, out serving the needs of the poor and suffering after church? Why weren’t we out giving love instead of giving each other mild conversations and gossip? It kinda puts a stark line between what Christ wanted us to do, and what we were doing. Were we exchanging the gospel of love for a gospel of judgment?

“Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?” (Matthew 7:4) – Dedicated to that Dean.

But it’s NOT that easy! It’s not something we can completely explain..."

Homosexuality, Christianity, Judgement, and Love... Click to continue reading...Collapse )

Questions: I ask you these. Feel free to answer one or all:

1) What is your take on Gay Christians? Is there a place for it in Christianity? Is it merely the by-product of religious bigotry?

2) Which other films do a great job of showing a religious stereotype, and combating this?

3) Which films best express love, grace, and mercy? How?

PS: Be civil and kind to others opinions. No mudslinging.
Monday, March 5th, 2007
10:20 pm
First Post

Hi I'm new to this community. I'm a religious studies major at Depaul Universtiy in Chicago.

I always find myself analyzing all kinds of movie from a religous or spiritual perspective. I'll just start with a short journal I did for my Religion and Pop Culture class a few years ago. It's on Dracula 2000.

Current Mood: creative
Saturday, March 3rd, 2007
4:30 pm
The Messianic Complex.
The Messianic complex in Film
By Leonard O Goenaga

Most of us (if not all) have sat through those wonderful films with the good-guy and the bad, and have watched as our hero single handedly saved the day (Star Wars anyone?). It’s probably the most cliché scenario in all of film: The Good Vs the Bad, and the actions of one man having single-handedly tilted the balance in favor of good.

Yet where exactly does this heroic concept come from? There’s many ways to argue it, but what exactly is it that appeals to us about good conquering? Why do we rejoice in the defeat of evil? What is evil? What I’m getting at is what is it about this hero ‘saving’ others that offers a profound insight into the our own human nature?

In various films we find something I call the messianic complex. In order to touch upon this, we must first define what makes up a messiah and savior...
The Messianic Complex; Click and Read onCollapse )

Topic of Discussion: What other roles do you find characters playing? In what other films do you find this 'Savior/Messiah' theme?
Wednesday, February 28th, 2007
10:30 am
Welcome to the Community!

This is a community for the exchange of idea's and perspectives on movie’s and their religious themes. In this community we all share an interest or love of religions, and constantly find them appearing in various forms throughout the day. One place where religions can be constantly found is in the media; and one media in particular is the film industry.

Sometimes religious themes are obvious (Such as Christianity in Chronicles of Narnia, or Tibetan Buddhism in Kundun), while other times they must be searched for. Our role in this community is to do the searching. Many of us may hold brilliant insights on a specific theme in a film, while another may build upon that shared theme or event present something entirely new. It is this open flow and exchange of idea's which backs the purpose of the community.

Think of it as a market-place, where idea's and perspectives are bartered. It’s nothing new that Buddhist, Christians, Muslims, Jews, and Hindu’s view the world entirely differently, and it’s these different perspectives that aid us in viewing a film in another light. Here we can share these perspectives of films, and add to each others perspectives with our own. You may post about a favorite film and describe the transcendental conflict, or just go about arguing with fellow members.

Whether it's a debate on a films religious meaning, or the intent of sharing a favorite film with religious undertones, this is the place.

Just remember a few rules:

-Respect the other members. By all means challenge their opinions and assumptions, but offer everyone respect in the form of the Golden Rule.

-No spamming other communities or webpages without the moderators permission.

-If your post is turning into a research paper, please use lj-cuts.

-Feel free to post youtube video’s of your film; by all means it’s encouraged.

-Nothing inappropriate. Treat this community as an open forum in the classroom. Try to keep your language educated and professional, and prevent cursing out of respect to the other members.


-Leonard O
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