Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Constantine's Sword

Leon casino,

Constantine’s Sword doesn’t ask the viewer to lose their religion but rather to re-examine their faith. Based on a book by former priest and peace activist James Carroll, CS traces evangelical zeal in current day America (Rev. Ted Haggard was also profiled in Jesus Camp) but also retraces steps back to the introduction of the cross into Christian iconology.
The original symbol was a fish or shepherd but the cross was Roman conqueror Constantine’s idea in the fourth century. His mom (Saint Helena) claimed she found Jesus’ robe and actual cross used for execution. Constantine’s Sword has a hard time accepting the robe as fact. Further roads through history show the church provoking war with Muslims and persecuting Jews in ways that are neither just nor holy. “Pius XII was not Hitler’s Pope,” states the narrator, “But he was Hitler’s Cardinal.”
Other fascinating topics include the reformations of Vatican Two and statements from the current Pope. War and religion are never far apart as Constantine’s Sword illustrates. As recently as last month, and of course this is not covered in the docu, the Vatican issued a statement claiming, and I paraphrase, that if aliens existed they would be God’s creatures too.

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