Posts Tagged ‘passion’

Joan of Arc as played by Renee Jeanne Falconetti, 1928

The Lectionary readings for this day, the Second Sunday of Lent, are Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16; Psalm 22:23-31; Romans 4:13-25; and, Mark 8:31-38 or Mark 9:2-9.

From these readings comes a theme of covenant, promise, and faith. From it also comes this verse in Romans 4:16b-17: He [Abraham] is the father of us all. As it is written: “I [God] have made you a father of many nations.” He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed—-the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.

The God who calls into being things that were/are not. For me, this phrase is worth holding onto forever, this is a game changing verse.

But, what is even more intriguing is the crossover of events and messages that I experienced today. First, in church, our pastor started a new series on praying boldly, which means to pray the big things, the larger than life prayers. If those prayers come to fruition, there is no doubt that God is in the results. Elijah was known for these kinds of prayers. And like Abraham’s faith, it’s believing God can bring things that are not, into existence.

Secondly, I went to Voices of Light: the Passion of Joan of Arc, an oratorio with Silent Film presented by the Baltimore Symphony, the Baltimore Choral Arts Society, and four soloists. The original music was composed by Richard Einhorn who was also present at the concert and introduced afterwards. The film, from 1928, was directed by Carol Theodor Dreyer and starred French actress, Renee Jeanne Falconetti, who, incidentally, never acted in another film after this one. The film was based on the actual court record of questions that religious authorities asked Joan D’Arc and her subsequent answers. And although her story ends in her death at the stake, her short life, driven by her voices and visions from God, crowned a king (Charles VII) and turned an army in despair into hope. Her faith was so authentically depicted, I could only weep at her inner battle. We saw her fears and faith seeking dominance.

Can I walk with such faith? Can I pray boldly? Can I challenge my fears and overcome them with my faith? Can I trust in the covenant I have made with God through the Christ?

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