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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Glee The 3D Concert Movie

By
Joseph McAleer
Source: Catholic News Service

One of the more popular television programs of recent years leaps to the big screen with "Glee The 3D Concert Movie" (Fox), a documentary-style look at a live-performance tour by the show's ensemble that comes complete with backstage drama, screaming fans and some very loud music.

While its overarching message of love and tolerance may be well-intentioned, however, as directed by MTV veteran Kevin Tancharoen, "Glee" takes its hallmark "anything goes" attitude to moral excess by its endorsement of the homosexual lifestyle.

On the surface, the film, like its TV counterpart, appears to be innocent karaoke, with fresh-faced "teens" (most of them, in reality, well past high school age) expressing their inner angst and searching for acceptance by singing cover versions of popular songs by everyone from the Beatles to Barbra Streisand, Katy Perry and Lady Gaga.

More disturbingly, interspersed with the musical numbers are profiles of dedicated fans, called "Gleeks," whose lives have supposedly been transformed and given meaning by the show. These include a gay teen who is cruelly outed by his school fellows, and a perky dwarf cheerleader whose small stature proves no bar to becoming prom queen.

For Gleeks, we learn, "Glee" is their religion, a politically correct gospel of universal acceptance. Anyone can be a Gleek, regardless of race, gender, disability or sexual orientation. No one is a loser; everyone wins and takes center stage in life.

While obviously not a substitute for real faith, this credo could be, within proper limits, a good ethical message to instill in impressionable young people. But the inclusion of homosexuality among the categories by which teens are to be both defined and affirmed blurs the line between upholding the dignity of the individual and recognizing that certain sexual behavior must be rejected as immoral since, by its very nature, it detracts from the fullness of that same dignity.

While insisting on compassion and support for those with same-sex attraction, and condemning discrimination against them as individuals, the Catholic Church, in its faithfulness to Scripture and tradition, cannot condone—much less celebrate, as this movie does—the misguided choice to follow through on such an attraction.

The film contains explicit endorsement of the homosexual lifestyle as well as some provocative lyrics and dancing. The Catholic News Service classification is O—morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG—parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.



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Pedro de San José Betancur: Central America claimed its first saint with the canonization of Pedro de San José Betancur by Pope John Paul II in Guatemala City on July 30, 2002. Known as the "St. Francis of the Americas," Pedro de Betancur is the first saint to have worked and died in Guatemala. 
<p>Calling the new saint an “outstanding example” of Christian mercy, the Holy Father noted that St. Pedro practiced mercy “heroically with the lowliest and the most deprived.” Speaking to the estimated 500,000 Guatemalans in attendance, the Holy Father spoke of the social ills that plague the country today and of the need for change. </p><p>“Let us think of the children and young people who are homeless or deprived of an education; of abandoned women with their many needs; of the hordes of social outcasts who live in the cities; of the victims of organized crime, of prostitution or of drugs; of the sick who are neglected and the elderly who live in loneliness,” he said in his homily during the three-hour liturgy. </p><p>Pedro very much wanted to become a priest, but God had other plans for the young man born into a poor family on Tenerife in the Canary Islands. Pedro was a shepherd until age 24, when he began to make his way to Guatemala, hoping to connect with a relative engaged in government service there. By the time he reached Havana, he was out of money. After working there to earn more, he got to Guatemala City the following year. When he arrived he was so destitute that he joined the bread line that the Franciscans had established. </p><p>Soon, Pedro enrolled in the local Jesuit college in hopes of studying for the priesthood. No matter how hard he tried, however, he could not master the material; he withdrew from school. In 1655 he joined the Secular Franciscan Order. Three years later he opened a hospital for the convalescent poor; a shelter for the homeless and a school for the poor soon followed. Not wanting to neglect the rich of Guatemala City, Pedro began walking through their part of town ringing a bell and inviting them to repent. </p><p>Other men came to share in Pedro's work. Out of this group came the Bethlehemite Congregation, which won papal approval after Pedro's death. A Bethlehemite sisters' community, similarly founded after Pedro's death, was inspired by his life of prayer and compassion. </p><p>He is sometimes credited with originating the Christmas Eve <i>posadas</i> procession in which people representing Mary and Joseph seek a night's lodging from their neighbors. The custom soon spread to Mexico and other Central American countries. </p><p>Pedro was canonized in 2002.</p> American Catholic Blog We sometimes try to do everything on our own, forgetting that the Lord wants to help us. Let's never be afraid to admit that we are weak and can't do things on our own. St. Paul gives us a great example: "On my own behalf I will not boast, except of my weaknesses" (2 Corinthians 12:5).


 
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