Chinese Long For A Relationship With God

John Morales, sports announcer on daily Relevant Radio, has his own program now, on Sunday mornings at 10 AM. It’s called Life Source: Bringing the Light of Christ to Every Day Living.

Tune in to Life Source

Visiting John’s studio recently I was overwhelmed at his religious library, his collection of Bibles, and his art collection. John has many interests, but as a sports announcer he met most of the greats and has autographed photos of him with all the big names such as the Chicago Bull’s Michael Jordan. Tune in John’s show every Sunday at 10 a.m., 820 on your AM dial.

WomanNews on Women in The Passion

The Chicago Tribune‘s WomanNews section Wednesday has an article by Raoul Mowatt on Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ titled “The Passion shows a feminine side.” While critical of a woman devil and revisiting the debate over whether Mary Magdalene was actually the woman taken in adultery, Mowatt does say it’s the first film to celebrate the active role women played in Jesus’ suffering and crucifixion: “In a world in which almost all the men are portrayed as sadistic and cowardly, the film’s women show compassion. They literally mop up Christ’s blood and remain true to their Messiah’s own values.”

While some criticize Satan played by Rosalinda Celentano, they believe Gibson wanted Satan to be both mysterious and somewhat enticing, with evil appearing as good. Others say the Satan character is androgynous, neither male nor female; the Satan character does have a man’s voice. The author praises Maia Morgenstern in her role as Christ’s mother, and mentions the wife of Pilate, who gives towels to Mary and Magdalene to wipe up Jesus’ blood. The column is mostly positive, especially for WomanNews.

Chinese Faithful Underground

The Communist Chinese government doesn’t seem to know what to do with the longing the Chinese people have for a relationship with God, known as “religion.” The government now allows worship, but only under its control. The state church is being allowed to build new churches.

According to a March 3 Chicago Tribune story by Michael Lev, there are ten million members in the Protestant government supported church, but fifty million in the unofficial Protestant church. There are five million members in the government sponsored Catholics church, but eight million Catholics in the underground or “house-church.” Unofficial believer Christians are subject to government arrest and persecution. It’s a mess.

Fading Quebecois

And speaking of messes, whatever happened to French Catholic Quebec? When we visited Quebec during 40’s and 50’s it was like one big Catholic Church, with large families, packed Catholic schools, and the Sunday Mass piped into restaurants during breakfast. Then came the secularization of Quebec in the 1960’s and everything went haywire.

Under the Liberal government, church attendance plummeted, marriages plunged, birth rates went down, abortion and divorce rates soared so that by 2004 the birthrate is so low some government leaders are offering incentives to married couples to have children.

In Coaticook, Quebec, for example, the city writes a $750 check for every third child and every child thereafter, and offers other incentives such as half-off for music lessons, sports equipment and youth activities. Parents say it helps, and some other Quebec towns are looking at Coaticook and considering similar incentives, as small towns are dying out in Quebec Province.

Gibson’s Investment Paying Off

Estimates are that Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ may end up taking in as much as 350 million dollars by Easter in the U. S. and Canada alone. It is the biggest mid-week-debut money-maker ever. Experts do not think Hollywood will try to copy Gibson, whose film is a personal quest to relate Christ’s passion because of it’s effect on his own life.

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