Believing in the importance of catering for different worship/learning styles and that God’s voice can be heard in contemporary culture, last Sunday, we held our first film and chat evening. Popcorn and sweets were dished out, the lights were dimmed and we settled into our seats as young and old watched the commercially successful and critically acclaimed film ‘Life of Pi’. Though the films that we will be watching are chosen more on their likelihood to provoke reflection and discussion rather than on their ease of viewing, it would seem that most enjoyed the tale of Pi and his journey across the ocean with a Bengal Tiger.
After the viewing and a tea & wiggle break, discussions ensued, first in small groups, then altogether, as questions concerning faith and action, inter-religious dialogue, the power of story-telling, the nature of truth, the revelation of God and the cuteness of meerkats were considered on various levels. But don’t think you need a degree a theology to take part in the evenings, for all thoughts, comments, perspectives and questions are valued and all are welcomed. Whether you prefer to listen rather than talk, love the film or hate it, can only stay for the viewing or only arrive for the discussion, we’d love to welcome you on a future evening.
· Thursday 22 January – monthly church cinema trip: ‘Into The Woods’ at Showcase, Nantgarw (evening timing to be confirmed)
· Monday 16 February, 7pm – our next film and chat evening. As it falls just after Valentine’s Day, we will watch a high school rom-com which considers the nature of Christianity today, albeit in a light-hearted way.
BBFC: Certificate 12, “Contains moderate sex references and one use of strong language.”
If you were unable to come on Sunday but have seen the film, you might like to consider the following questions:
· What was your response to the film? What did you like/dislike about it?
· What was your reaction to the portrayal of religion in the scenes set in India? Do you think faith was portrayed positively or negatively? And Christianity?
· As a young Hindu Christian Muslim, at the dinner table, Ravi declared that he wanted to be baptized. Would you have baptized Ravi? Why/why not?
· What do you think Pi/the film is trying to say with the two different stories? Do you regard it as a positive or negative statement about faith?
· Francis/’Mamaji’ told the author that Pi’s story would make him believe in God. How do you view Pi’s storytelling as a model of evangelism?
· How did you view Pi’s relationship, and dialogue, with God whilst at sea? Could you relate to the teenage boy from Pondicherry, lost at sea with a Bengal tiger?!
· One Christian reviewer (Paul Asay, Plugged In) deems the film ‘a fascinating movie that deeply mulls faith while offering other extraordinary but ancillary messages. But without proper mooring, a casual viewer might take away a couple of dangerous messages’. Do you agree/disagree with this? If agree, what do you think the church could do to encourage/enable a ‘proper mooring’?