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Dramatic faith

"Dramatic faith" Continued...

Issue: "Not over till it's over," Nov. 1, 2008

Q: What do you like most about what you do?

In terms of Scripture presentation, I really like engaging the mind of Christ, the mind of God and interacting with it. In terms of other material I really enjoy engaging with people who engaged with God and came to whatever their conclusions were. I like that interaction of trying to interpret it and trying to make it alive.

Q: How have your family life and your calling intertwined?

Not as well as I would have liked them to, and not as well as if I could do it over again. I feel like in terms of culture making as a father, there's no greater cultural contribution that I could possibly make in the world than my children. I just wish I had thought about that a little earlier in my life, because I did a lot of traveling.

Q: How do you prevent Christian art from becoming saccharin and soaked in sentimentalism?

The reason there is that sort of saccharin aesthetic is because there's a kind of isolation. In New York that kind of saccharin art is challenged. But on the flip side, there's a message in theater today: "There is no God, get over it." The worldview in secular theater is pretty dark. We do need people to produce [good] plays, to put the money behind it, to write those plays, to direct those plays because that's when the culture making happens. I would like to see more people thinking about "How do I create culture?"

Character lessons

The Fellowship for the Performing Arts, based in New Jersey, has staged professional theatrical productions in New York City, Washington, Dallas, Houston, and Chicago, and at dozens of colleges and performing arts venues in the United States and Canada. The FPA's vision: "At the root of understanding Christianity is the admission that the world is not what it ought to be, and at the heart of being a Christian is the confession that, 'I am part of the problem.' Many of us are motivated to exert enormous energy to realize perceived ultimate values-usually some form of power, profit or pleasure-that override humility, virtue and sacrifice. The result is often conflict and disintegration." When we see characters on stage choosing wrongly, maybe we'll come to grips with disintegration in our own lives.

Marvin Olasky
Marvin Olasky

Marvin is editor in chief of WORLD News Group and the author of more than 20 books, including The Tragedy of American Compassion. Follow Marvin on Twitter @MarvinOlasky.

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