Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Godfather as a picture of the church

I just finished watching The Godfather trilogy (again). I love these movies. The stories are great. The scenes are beautiful. The music is haunting. And the Godfather movies are a lot like the Christian faith. I know that does not make sense on the surface. After all, the Corleone's are criminals. They run an illegal gambling operation. They own casinos and hotels in Las Vegas. They maintain a prostitution business. They are violent, murdering, immoral, foul-mouthed thugs. Their only stand for traditional morality is that they hesitate to get into the drug business.
  • They teach us the value of loyalty to family. We are reminded over and over again that family is important. In fact, we learn clearly that investing time in your children is the best way to instill your values in the next generation. Vito, Michael and others remind us, "Never go against the family."
  • They teach us how to deal with adversity. Okay, they are really not a good example of this. They usually deal with adversity by killing someone else. But they do teach us to never give up. Even when it seems that everyone is against the Corleones, somehow they survive and grow. Church life is not always easy, but never give up.
  • Although the Corleones are bullies, they teach us the importance of making decisions. Vito offers Woltz an 'offer he can't refuse.' He asks for a decision, a commitment. Too often in the church we are wishy-washy and indecisive. It's time to change that.
  • Finally, the Corleones teach us the importance of commitment to the church. Michael was not a church person. In fact, he confesses to Archbiship Lamberto that he has not confessed in over 30 years. However, he has not lost his appreciation for the church. It is important that we maintain our love for God and the church that he has built and is building.

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