Monday, May 15, 2006

Upcoming Da Vinci Code Sermon

On Sunday, June 11 I plan to preach a sermon about The Da Vinci Code movie and reactions to it by religious group in the United States and around the world.

For background reading, you may wish to consider the sermon I delivered on the book in December, 2003. You also may be interested in the wonderful UU World article on Mary Magdalene by Rev. Liz Lerner.

I plan to title my sermon "Misplaced Offense." I plan to examine the "controversy" created by the Da Vinci Code movie in light of two guiding lights:

First, University of Chicago Religion professor Bruce Lincoln's assertion that "Those who sustain [an] idealized image of culture do so, inter alia, by mistaking the dominant fraction (sex, age group, class, [dogma] and/or caste) of a given group for the group or 'culture' itself. At the same time, they mistake the ideological positions favoured and propagated by the dominant fraction for those of the group as a whole (e.g. when texts authored by Brahmins define 'Hinduism', or when the statements of male elders constitute 'Nuer religion')."

And second, this famous quote from a sermon by Tony Campolo: "I have three things I'd like to say today. First, while you were sleeping last night, 30,000 kids died of starvation or diseases related to malnutrition. Second, most of you don't give a shit. What's worse is that you're more upset with the fact that I said shit than the fact that 30,000 kids died last night."

Finally, a bit of shamelessness for the search engines: Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code, Opus Dei, Robert Langdon, Sophie Neveu, Catholic Church, Jesus, Mary Magdalene, Holy Grail, Tom Hanks, Audrey Tatou, Ron Howard, conspiracy, boycott, protest, controversy, France, Knights Templar