"As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord." Joshua 24:15
Last Sunday morning at church I was sharing information about the May Crowning with my fellow lector, Paul H. He told me that he remembered going to the Milwaukee Archdiocesan Marian Shrine back in the 1950's to pray for the conversion of Russia, but that today it's probably more appropriate to pray for the conversion of Hollywood. Last night my husband and I had the opportunity to see a movie made by a group that is actually working to convert Hollywood, or at least to put out movies with a positive Christian message and hopefully impact the world of Hollywood, proving that with the success of this movie, Americans are hungry for good, decent stories with positive messages that are free of the excessive sex, violence and profanity with which we are normally deluded when going to see a movie.
Through this blog, I was invited to a screening of the movie Courageous which will be in theaters on September 30th. Courageous is the lastest Kendrick Brothers film by Tristar and Sherwood pictures in association with Provident Films and Affirm Films, the same people who brought us Facing the Giants and Fireproof. The movie focuses on the importance of fatherhood through the eyes of men who work in law enforcement.
When Paul and I arrived at the theater, we were given a "goody-bag" filled with promotional items and a tee-shirt. When the movie was over, another movie-goer commented that there was something very important that was missing from the "goody-bag'; a box of kleenex. I was actually thinking the same thing, because from the very first powerfully opening scene I was emotionally caught up in the lives of the main characters-their hurts, sorrows and joys all felt like my own-and everyone in the theater was frequently moved to tears followed by bursts of laughter.
Courageous offered plenty of exciting action coupled with touching scenes of family life during some of the most difficult situations that life has to offer. The characters were "real"-I felt as if I could relate to them and their family situations. While watching a scene where one of the families was grieving together, I couldn't help but think that these are the real-life saints of today, people who step through their suffering to improve their lives and the lives of those around them. And looking over to my husband at the end of the film, I was struck by the realization that Paul is a living saint, an excellent father who already knows the importance of spending time with his children, of being a strong disciplinarian, and of encouraging our children to live their lives with the purpose of giving glory to God in all they do. And more than that, I also realized how blessed we are in the Catholic Church to have spiritual fathers, our priests, who spend their lives promoting the same values that were fostered in this film: love, integrity, spiritual friendships, and a strong faith in God.
Would I recommend that you see this film upon its release on September 30th? Absolutely!!! It is without a doubt the best and most powerful movie that I have ever seen and just watching the trailer, I found that I once again had a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes recalling the story that calls all fathers to be Courageous in their vocation.