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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Kingdom of Heaven

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Sweeping, if bloody and somewhat revisionist, historical drama set in the time of the Crusades about a disillusioned blacksmith (Orlando Bloom) elevated to knighthood who journeys to Jerusalem in search of redemption and becomes embroiled in the power struggle between the tolerance-advocating Latin king and a war-mongering would-be usurper, who threatens to disrupt the tenuous truce between the Christian and Muslim forces. Spectacularly directed by Ridley Scott and full of grand-scale battle scenes and period detail, the epic film takes license with the facts, but overall portrays both sides as a mix of vice and virtue (though in its skewed telling of the events Christians come off as the prime villains) and imparts a timely message of peaceful coexistence, as well as a strong condemnation of violence, ideological hatred and war. Recurring intense battlefield violence and associated gore, including decapitations, hacked limbs and flaming bodies, as well as a brief adulterous sexual encounter. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L -- limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted.



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Raymond Lull: Raymond worked all his life to promote the missions and died a missionary to North Africa. 
<p>Raymond was born at Palma on the island of Mallorca in the Mediterranean Sea. He earned a position in the king’s court there. One day a sermon inspired him to dedicate his life to working for the conversion of the Muslims in North Africa. He became a Secular Franciscan and founded a college where missionaries could learn the Arabic they would need in the missions. Retiring to solitude, he spent nine years as a hermit. During that time he wrote on all branches of knowledge, a work which earned him the title "Enlightened Doctor." </p><p>Raymond then made many trips through Europe to interest popes, kings and princes in establishing special colleges to prepare future missionaries. He achieved his goal in 1311 when the Council of Vienne ordered the creation of chairs of Hebrew, Arabic and Chaldean at the universities of Bologna, Oxford, Paris and Salamanca. At the age of 79, Raymond went to North Africa in 1314 to be a missionary himself. An angry crowd of Muslims stoned him in the city of Bougie. Genoese merchants took him back to Mallorca, where he died. Raymond was beatified in 1514.</p> American Catholic Blog Let’s not forget these words: The Lord never tires of forgiving us, never. The problem is that we grow tired; we don’t want to ask, we grow tired of asking for forgiveness.

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