In anticipation of one of the greatest films impact-wise to ever open, we are counting down to Opening Day on Ash Wednesday when in theaters everywhere people will be moved by the Traditional inspiration of Mel Gibson who many see as a Hollywood movie star, but True Catholics see him as an evangelist in the purist sense.
A true Apostle for the Truths and Traditions of the Church Christ founded. Mel has set on celluloid what has always been set in stone: the everlasting reminder of why Christ died for each and every one of us. We have that reminder daily in the Latin Mass when the alter Christus - the priest offers Him up as a propitiatory sacrifice in an unbloody manner to the Father for us. Prayerfully this movie will move the hearts and souls of millions to return to the Truths and Traditions of Christ's True Church. For advance tickets, see The Passion Tickets
Posted Jan 21:
Mel Gibson Rebuts Vatican Denial
NEWSMAX.COM Monday, Jan. 19, 2004
Mel Gibson's spokesman issued a statement late Monday saying there is no reason to believe the Vatican's denial that the Pope commented favorably about the controversial film "The Passion of the Christ."
Associates of Gibson quoted the pope as commenting, after viewing the film, "It is as it was."
Since then, questions have swirled about the papal statement, and the pope's remarks angered critics of the film, who claim it will arouse anti-Semitism. The film is set for release on Feb. 25, Ash Wednesday.
On Monday, the Catholic News Service, an arm of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, reported that the pope "never" made such a statement.
CNS quoted the pope's longtime personal secretary, Archbishop Stanislaw Dziwisz.
"The Holy Father told no one his opinion of this film," the archbishop told CNS. But Steve McEveety, the film's co-producer, and Jan Michelini, its assistant director, said they met Archbishop Dziwisz after the papal viewing. Dziwisz told them the pope simply commented, "It is as it was."
Now, Dziwisz claims, "That is not true."
"I said clearly to McEveety and Michelini that the Holy Father made no declaration," the archbishop told CNS.
In a statement issued late Monday, Gibson's spokesman Alan Nierob stated:
"Based on all previous correspondence and conversations held directly between representatives of the film and the official spokesperson for the Pope, Dr. Joaquin Navarro-Valls, there is no reason to believe that the Pope's support of the film 'isn't as it was'."
Also see our HOT ISSUES editorial on this 'It' depends on what 'is' was!
What they're saying...
Posted Jan 20:
Editor's Note: In bringing you these quotes from various religious leaders and secular dignitaries, The Daily Catholic is merely pointing out their position and in no way agrees with their religiousity or assumptions.
"Mr. Gibson has attempted to painstakingly recreate the crucifixion of Christ, not to assail Jews, but to arouse in people a desire to understand the price paid for their salvation. I am praying that Mel Gibson's movie will have a powerful impact on our culture and that it will appeal to millions of movie lovers who are starving for a glimmer of honesty regarding the miraculous and life-changing story of the One who died for everyone, no matter their religious heritage, station in life, sexual preference or skin color." (From Falwell Confidential, Sept 24, 2003) Dr. Jerry Falwell, The Liberty Channel
Posted Jan 19:
Editor's Note: In bringing you these quotes from various religious leaders and secular dignitaries, The Daily Catholic is merely pointing out their position and in no way agrees with their religiousity or assumptions. We will always stand by what is written in the Gospels, specifically Matthew 27: 25. It is not anti-semitic, but a fact that cannot be denied no matter what spin, ecumaniacal bent or revisionist history anyone pushes. I find it abhorrent that a bishop of Chaput's knowledge would say "a sin which the church has repented from." This is heresy for the Church - the True Church is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic and the Mystical Bride. Men can repent, so were he to say 'church leaders' repented from, but please don't say 'the church.' What John Paul II did in the Jubilee Year was pure pandering with no Catholicity or regard to the Saints and Martyrs who died for Holy Mother church. All part of the Ecumania!
"I thought it was an extraordinary work of art and extraordinarily faithful to the gospels. If I was critical of the film's detractors it's because I think it's unwise for any group to try to intimidate either the church or people of Mel Gibson's faith from speaking very clearly what they believe to be true. You know anti-Semitism is a terrible sin; it's a sin the church has repented from and will need to continue to repent from if and when there are examples of it in church life. But to clearly proclaim our belief that Jesus is the messiah and that he suffered, died and rose from the dead is for us something we have a duty to proclaim." (Rocky Mountain News, Aug 21, 2003) Archbishop Charles Chaput, Archbishop of Denver
Posted Jan 18:
EWTN to broadcast 'exclusive interview' with Gibson this coming Friday Night
Irondale, AL (EWTN) - EWTN Global Catholic Network will air News Director Raymond Arroyo’s second exclusive interview, with Academy Award winning actor and director, Mel Gibson, as part of the international newsmagazine, The World Over Live. Their complete conversation will air on Friday, January 23 at 8 PM EDT, Saturday, January 24 at 1 AM EDT, Sunday, January 25 at 5 PM EDT, and Monday, January 26 at 10 AM EDT and 11 PM EDT.
Inside the Vatican magazine has chosen Mel Gibson as its "Man of the Year" for 2003
In the interview, Gibson breaks his silence, speaking for the first time about charges that his film, The Passion of the Christ is anti-Semitic. He talks about his bold vision for the project and his motivation for making the film.
Gibson tells Arroyo, “It reflects my beliefs-I’ve never done that before.” He also candidly comments on the controversy surrounding the movie, his resistance to altering the film, and his personal commitment to press forward: “I don’t know if I will ever work again. I’ve said that this is a career killer and it could well be, but that doesn’t matter because I don’t care,” Gibson says in the interview.
Based on biblical accounts, the movie, "The Passion of the Christ," depicts the last 12 hours of Christ’s life on earth and will be released in the U.S. on Ash Wednesday, February 25th. EWTNews Director, Raymond Arroyo was on set, in Italy during the filming of “The Passion of the Christ” last year, and is the only broadcast journalist to conduct an extended interview with Mel Gibson about the project. Raymond Arroyo will discuss his latest interview upon request.
EWTN Global Catholic Network, in its 22nd year, is available in English and Spanish in more than 85 million television households in 110 countries. And with its worldwide short wave radio station, satellite delivered radio network, Internet site (www.ewtn.com) and publishing arm, EWTN is the largest religious media network in the world.
Editor's Note: It will be most interesting to see how this neo-Catholic station and anchor skirt the issue of Mel's Traditional Roman Catholic practice and how they will avoid Mel bringing up anything about the terrible folly of Vatican II. You know they'll spin it as an 'ecumenical' tool rather than an evangelization tool to bring all to the the Truths Christ taught and preserved within the only Church He founded. My bet is that it will focus almost totally on the 'anti-Semitic' issue which, in truth, is a mute point. It's forever recorded in the Scriptures, and we can only pray Mel will reinsert the words of Matthew 27: 26, "His blood be on us and our children."
Posted Jan 17:
ITV's "Man of the Year": Mel Gibson
Inside the Vatican News January 16 2004
by Inside the Vatican staff
VATICAN CITY, January 16, 2004 -- Mel Gibson, director of the controversial film "The Passion of the Christ" which will open in theaters on February 25, has been chosen as Inside the Vatican's "Man of the Year" for 2003, the magazine's editor, Robert Moynihan, said today.
"Some may raise their eyebrows at the choice of Mel Gibson as our 2003 Man of the Year," Moynihan said. "Our choice is not a canonization; we are not proclaiming Mr. Gibson 'St. Mel'. We live in an age of information and imagery — an age when the media has unprecedented influence, and an age when film is perhaps the medium 'par excellence' for disseminating ideas, for teaching and preaching. In such an age, a man who decides, as Mr. Gibson decided in 2002, to take a large chunk of his personal fortune and risk his entire professional career on a film about Jesus Christ, is a rarity.
"And, in such an age, when such a man decides to make such a film, not in order to present an imaginary Christ, but to present a Christ in accordance with the Gospels, such a man is engaged in 'evangelization' in the literal sense of the word: he is spreading the Gospel truth about Jesus.
"And when such a man perseveres despite enormous criticism and repeated attacks against his motives and his character, he becomes admirable.
"And when such a film becomes — as those who have seen it have testified — the most moving film of its genre ever made, we sense we are in the presence of something truly extraordinary.
"In our secular age, the commitment made by Mr. Gibson during 2003 to complete his film, 'The Passion of The Christ' — to paint, as it were, his own 'Sistine Chapel' in cinematic form — bears witness to something that transcends Mel Gibson himself.
"And it is that 'something transcendent' which we honor in naming Mel Gibson our 'Man of the Year.'"
The magazine named nine other people among its "Top 10" people of 2003:
(2) the Holy See’s chief spokesman on behalf of the family: Cardinal Alfonso Lopez-Trujillo
(3) a widow from Guatemala: Rosalina Tuyuc, representive of all who lost loved ones during the civil wars of the past century
(4) a Benedictine nun who was the first woman to kiss Elvis Presley on screen and gave up her film career for love of Christ: Mother Dolores Hart
(5) an Italian professor who has dedicated his life to making peace: Andrea Riccardi, founder of the Sant'Egidio Community
(6) a Catholic Palestinian who stands firm against terrorism but calls equally firmly for justice: Michel Sabbah, the Latin-rite Patriarch of Jerusalem
(7) a Russian Orthodox bishop who is laboring to help Europe remember its Christian identity: Hilarion Alfeyev
(8) an American bishop who has defended family farmers and called on Catholic politicians to be coherent: Raymond Burke, new archbishop of St. Louis, Missouri (USA)
(9) a British Catholic medievalist who died half a century ago, but whose Christian allegory of the triumph of good over evil, "The Lord of the Rings," returned in 2003 as a magical film: J.R.R. Tolkien
(10) The entire order founded by Mother Teresa of Calcutta: the Missionaries of Charity, because in their faces Mother Teresa lives on.
"We chose the Missionaries of Charity collectively at #10... knowing 'the last shall be first,' " Moynihan said, adding: "Sorry, Mel..."
The January issue of "Inside the Vatican" includes a 30-page dossier on all aspects of the controversy over Mel Gibson's film.
Posted Jan 16:
Gibson's "Passion" to hit U.S. screens big!
Wed 14 January, 2004 21:28
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Sometimes a little faith can go a long way.
Mel Gibson's controversial new film, "The Passion of Christ," which at first had a hard time finding a distributor, will be independently released on about 2,000 screens in the United States next month, a Gibson spokesman said on Wednesday.
A release on 2,000 screens is similar to what a major studio release would receive.
The movie, whose dialogue is in Latin and Aramaic, covers the final 12 hours in the life of Jesus Christ and has come under fire from some Jewish groups who claim its story could foment anti-Semitism by tying Christ's death to Jewish authorities.
But Catholic and Protestant groups, as well as biblical scholars, have defended the film, saying it sticks closely to accounts of the crucifixion as told in the New Testament.
Pope John Paul saw the movie in December and told his longtime Polish secretary Archbishop Stanislaw Dziwisz, "It is as it was," meaning he considered it an authentic portrayal of Gospel accounts, a Vatican source told Reuters.
Even though Gibson is a high-profile actor and Oscar winning director of films such as "Braveheart," "Passion of Christ" could not find a major motion picture studio that would distribute it due to the controversy.
In October, Gibson's Icon Productions film company and independent movie specialist Newmarket Films agreed to jointly distribute "Passion of Christ" starting on February 25.
Independent films normally start in small releases in only a few theatres. As their popularity grows, the distributor will place the film in hundreds of theatres around the country.
Newmarket's "Whale Rider," for instance, peaked at just over 550 screens this past summer.