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    Tuesday, July 03, 2007

    A normal Priest... what next?

    This might be interesting.

    Too many millions believe the fictional characters they relate to on television. As sad as that is, perhaps this will have good results.


    The fall television lineup will include a show about Catholic priests. But it won’t be a tale about corrupt or dysfunctional priests, as some shows in the past have been.

    Rather, “Vows” – now in production for the American Movie Channel – is about a priest who is faithful and is in love with the church.

    “When my agent asked if I was going to pitch an idea to the networks for a new series, I told him my only idea was really insane,” she said. Her agent thought a series about Jesuits in a formation house might be, as the agent put it, “outlandish enough to work.”

    “The orthodox priest-protagonist is a novelty,” she added. “Everything else has been done: the cool liberal priest, the gay priest, the drug-addicted pastor, priests who are pedophiles or who have lost faith. Networks are interested now in what is real, which seems weird enough to them to be compelling.”

    The Jesuits, Hall noted, hold a special place in her own life. Having been raised Methodist, she recalled that Ignatian spirituality played a central role in her conversion to Catholicism as an adult.

    “I didn’t seek out St. Ignatius,” she said. “He found me. I used to wonder why I had this irrational love for a dead bald guy from the Basque country, until I finally figured out that I have some kind of strange Jesuit vocation.”

    Plus, she said, the Jesuit charism remains unique and relevant for people today. “Ignatius was really the first to show people how to find God in all things. He set the Jesuits up to be in the world, to roll up their sleeves and get into the muck. This is still true of them and they are particularly accessible to the audience because most people know a Jesuit or have at least heard of them.”

    By the way, that younger Priest in the Excorsist was a Jesuit too.


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