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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Gospel, The

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Elevating if melodramatic redemption drama about a preacher's son (Boris Kodjoe) who returns home after 15 years -- putting his temptation-filled success as a chart-topping hip-hop artist on hold -- to mend fences with his estranged father (Clifton Powell), who is terminally ill, and his childhood friend (Idris Elba), who's been named his father's successor at the church, and to make peace with himself and his past. Despite an undernourished script padded with roof-raising gospel music numbers, director Rob Hardy's contemporary reimagining of the prodigal son parable movingly explores themes of family, faith, forgiveness, flawed humanity and God's unconditional love. An implied sexual encounter, mature themes, brief fisticuffs, a bump-and-grind dance sequence and some mildly crude language, making it better suited for older adolescents. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG -- parental guidance suggested.

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Our Lady of Sorrows: For a while there were two feasts in honor of the Sorrowful Mother: one going back to the 15th century, the other to the 17th century. For a while both were celebrated by the universal Church: one on the Friday before Palm Sunday, the other in September. 
<p>The principal biblical references to Mary's sorrows are in Luke 2:35 and John 19:26-27. The Lucan passage is Simeon's prediction about a sword piercing Mary's soul; the Johannine passage relates Jesus' words to Mary and to the beloved disciple. </p><p>Many early Church writers interpret the sword as Mary's sorrows, especially as she saw Jesus die on the cross. Thus, the two passages are brought together as prediction and fulfillment. </p><p>St. Ambrose (December7) in particular sees Mary as a sorrowful yet powerful figure at the cross. Mary stood fearlessly at the cross while others fled. Mary looked on her Son's wounds with pity, but saw in them the salvation of the world. As Jesus hung on the cross, Mary did not fear to be killed but offered herself to her persecutors.</p> American Catholic Blog For mercy is an indispensable dimension of love; it is as it were love’s second name. —Blessed John Paul II

 
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