An evangelical, a reporter, and a nun sat down to watch a film.

Sounds like a good joke, but actually it was just the start of a good time, especially if you a religious geek like me.

One of my friends, Joe, and one of his friends, a Catholic nun, watched a film called Jesus Camp las night. Joe, a reporter at the La Crosse Tribune, is doing an op-ed piece on it, and wanted my input, in part because I’m a kind-of evangelical, and the film purports to illustrate evangelical children. (It does show a narrow subset of evangelicals broadly defined, namely, Pentecostal fundamentalists. Some prefer to label these traditions as separate, and understandably so.) (What is an evangelical? Click here.)

On the one hand I didn’t like the film, (typical of an evangelical isn’t it?) . But on the other hand, it was what it was, it might not exactly be what some people are going to think it is, but none-the-less, the people on there were who they were. It was their own words.

One of the main questions Joe had was, is this main stream evangelicalism, or is this a fringe group? All I could say was “kind-of” (in a lot more words) . For starters, asking what are evangelicals like or what do they think, is like asking, what do black people think, or what do people from the Midwest think. On the one hand you can find some trends if you take a scientific sampling, on the other hand, nothing beats looking another person in the face and asking “what do you think?”

Last night was a good example of this. In a small apartment in La Crosse sat a white male, kind of Evangelical, from La Crosse, that spent the last two years studying theology in Los Angles (me). A young (whatever that implies) African, Roman Catholic nun, who has been in the States for two years, and who is currently studying theology at Viterbo. And a white male religion reporter who spent several years living and studying in New York City, yet appreciates the best parts of a small city, and who half of La Crosse thinks is going to hell (Love ya Joe). We all sat around talking about some controversial film and enjoying each other's company. Now if only Joe hadn’t been observing lent by abstaining from alcohol, we could have had a spectacular time! : )

Joe's article will run Sunday in the La Crosse Tribune.

1 comment:

Mx5 said...

It was fun seeing your name in print this morning as I sat sipping my coffee and reading the Trib. Well said, David!