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Is Faith Real? Two movies and some reflections

     The final week of my recent sabbatical included several good movies.  Two of them contained explicit themes of faith:  "The Way" and "Higher Ground."

     "The Way" is the story of a man who decides to make the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage in Spain.  His journey and the journey of fellow pilgrims show some regular people walking and wondering if they will meet God on their way to Santiago.  The movie is very true to the spirit of the Camino as I have experienced it. (However, I must add that, although the movie shows some marijuana use, I never saw  drugs of any kind on the Camino.  Well, there WAS quite a bit of ibuprofin!  In addition, the pilgrims in this movie do not seem to grow as sore as most pilgrims really do at first!  But never mind that ... )

     The film portrays friendships which develop among pilgrims, diverse purposes of those who make the pilgrimage, sometimes surprising accommodations along the way, and the always powerful experience of finally reaching Santiago.   See the film for yourself and decide:  how 'real' is the experience of God discovered by each main character?  

     "Higher Ground" asks that very question explicitly.  It is a rare and respectful look into a small house church of committed Christians.  Faith is taken seriously in the film, and so is the loss of faith.   Clear theological convictions and cultural mores are in evidence.   This is a theologically serious and psychologically astute film.  Most of all, it displays a longing for God which I have never seen before in a film. 

     I am very happy I saw both of these movies, and I recommend them wholeheartedly.

     Happy Thanksgiving,

     Pastor Diane


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