By Rev. Lori Ethridge
Minister to Senior Adults
The phrase, “Take up and read” is known to us from St. Augustine’s conversion experience which he recounts in his Confessions. On a visit to the Cokesbury Bookstore at last summer’s annual conference, a title, Hollywood Jesus, by Matt Rawle caught my eye. Normally I would not have been interested in such a title, but I had just been in Hollywood, California for a memorial service two weeks prior to annual conference. I purchased the volume and enjoyed the topic so much that it sparked an idea for a themed retreat for the senior adults, one at which we would watch a number of current films and discuss their theological underpinnings. This vision has become a reality, and twenty of us are departing in mid-November for a two day retreat at WinShape Retreat on the campus of Berry College to watch movies, eat popcorn and talk about biblical themes in modern media.
Little did I know that Rev. Elaine Wilder had selected a book by Matt Rawle, (the same author who wrote Hollywood Jesus) entitled The Faith of a Mockingbird, for her Wednesday evening Bible study this fall. Imagine my surprise when at a recent staff meeting, Rev. Brian Smith informed us that the church-wide Advent study, for those interested in participating, would be another book by Matt Rawle, entitled The Redemption of Scrooge. Matt Rawle is a United Methodist minister in Louisiana, and he is getting a lot of air time here at Marietta FUMC! If you are reading any of these titles, and you like what you are experiencing, please let the staff know, as we are considering inviting Rev Matt Rawle to be our keynote speaker at next year’s Beth Berman Dinner. The time has changed, and the weather is getting cooler. These are two good reasons to curl up by the fire and take up and read!