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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

The Lucky One

By
Sr. Rose Pacatte, F.S.P.
Source: AmericanCatholic.org

U.S. Marine Sergeant Logan Thibault (Zac Ephron) survives several bombings and ambushes while deployed in Iraq.  This is his third tour. In some rubble along the road he sees a photograph of a beautiful young woman with a message written on the back: “Stay safe” and is signed “Beth”. While holding the photo another bomb goes off where Logan was standing. He starts to think the photo is like a guardian angel or good luck charm for him. Then it happens again; he survives when his buddy is killed.
 
When Logan returns home he goes to stay with his sister and her family in Colorado. It soon becomes evident he is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).  But he is still haunted by the photo and instead of going to the VA to get help he decides to walk across the county with his beloved German shepherd Zeus to find her. And he does - at a kennel in Louisiana.
 
Beth (Taylor Schilling) thinks Logan is there for a job but when he says he is a former marine she turns him away. But her grandmother (Blythe Danner), with whom Beth and her seven year-old son Ben (Riley Thomas Stewart) live, hires him anyway. We soon learn that Beth’s beloved older brother was a marine killed in combat but so far the military has not told them how he died but they suggested that friendly fire may have had a role in his death. On no evidence Beth suspects that Logan might have been involved. Beth has survived much loss: their parents were killed in an accident when she and her brother were young. She became pregnant as a senior in high school, married the father, Keith (Jay R. Ferguson) who is a bully dressed in a deputy sheriff’s uniform.  They are now divorced.
 
“The Lucky One” is based on the best-selling novel by Nicholas Sparks and I was privileged to meet him last Saturday during the press day for the film. When asked about the predictability of his stories he described the formula that resonates with readers: a plot that moves through all life’s emotions from loss, sorrow, jealousy, betrayal, sadness, tragedy, reconciliation, love to joy.  He also said that there are three things that he insists on when his books are turned into movies: 1) That the spirit and intent of the story are maintained 2) that the spirit and intent of the characters are maintained and 3) that the filmmakers make the best movie possible. In other words Sparks does not mind artistic license if it serves the story.

“The Lucky One” is the fourth collaboration between Nicholas Sparks and producer Denise Di Novi and a fifth is in the works.




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Visitation: This is a fairly late feast, going back only to the 13th or 14th century. It was established widely throughout the Church to pray for unity. The present date of celebration was set in 1969 in order to follow the Annunciation of the Lord (March 25) and precede the Nativity of John the Baptist (June 24). 
<p>Like most feasts of Mary, it is closely connected with Jesus and his saving work. The more visible actors in the visitation drama (see Luke 1:39-45) are Mary and Elizabeth. However, Jesus and John the Baptist steal the scene in a hidden way. Jesus makes John leap with joy—the joy of messianic salvation. Elizabeth, in turn, is filled with the Holy Spirit and addresses words of praise to Mary—words that echo down through the ages. </p><p>It is helpful to recall that we do not have a journalist’s account of this meeting. Rather, Luke, speaking for the Church, gives a prayerful poet’s rendition of the scene. Elizabeth’s praise of Mary as “the mother of my Lord” can be viewed as the earliest Church’s devotion to Mary. As with all authentic devotion to Mary, Elizabeth’s (the Church’s) words first praise God for what God has done to Mary. Only secondly does she praise Mary for trusting God’s words. </p><p>Then comes the Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55). Here Mary herself (like the Church) traces all her greatness to God.</p> American Catholic Blog Someone once told Pope Francis that his words had inspired him to give a lot more to the poor. Pope Francis’s response was to challenge the man not to just give money, but to roll up his sleeves, get his hands dirty, and actually reach out and help.

Men, Women, and the Mystery of Love

 
CATHOLIC GREETINGS
The Visitation
Mary’s song of joy on this occasion traces all her blessings to God’s generosity.

St. Joan of Arc
The piety of this 15th-century military heroine was not appreciated until centuries after her death.

Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ
Ultimately it is the Eucharist that feeds us and leads us to the heavenly banquet.

Ven. Pierre Toussaint
This former slave is one of many American holy people whose life particularly models Christian values.

Memorial Day (U.S.)
This weekend remember all those who have fought and died for peace.




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