Thursday, October 05, 2006

"Lights, Camera, GOD!"


By Hope Frances

Sodom & Gomorrah - that is the image people all over the world often think of when they see or hear the name, Hollywood.

I recently moved to Southern California. And guess where I've chosen to plant my suitcases and set up home?

You guessed it - Hollywood!

And now I'm getting a first hand view of how this little town works, how it breathes, how it lives. From anyone on the outside looking in, Hollywood may appear to be a decadent city where God doen't even get a footnote. Why? Because that is the image everybody sees when they watch the movies made here, see the TV shows produced here, or hear the music recorded here.

It is these celluloid images that become ingrained in the minds of people all over the world. But they're only celluloid images. They look real, but they are not. Everything is not as it appears to be. Just ask the local guys from here.

I should know. I live here now.

And so one wonders how God could possibly exist here in the entertainment capital of the world. And if so, where?

That was the inspiration for "Lights, Camera, God! - Faith Life in Hollywood."

God is alive and strong in Hollywood. The people who live and work here have strong faiths. They practice it. They believe.

You just need to know where to look. And you will find Him.

In some cases, He will find you.

Interestingly enough, once the editor of ParishWorld.net and I decided to start this new column, God spared no time in proving that He is definitely out here.

First, the film "Bella" won the People's Choice Award at the Toronto Film Festival. The following day I went to a coffee shop. And as I was waiting for my order I noticed a post card on the bulletin board advertising a prayer and Bible study group that meets right in the heart of Hollywood. Shortly after, the story broke that FoxFaith would produce 12 Christian films per year!

And, the list goes on…

Many will point out the deleterious effects that the "entertainment" industry can have on the lives of everyday people. They say it is an industry where the door to God appears to be bolted shut - where negativity breeds negativity.

In this blog, however, we chose to accent the positive in an effort to show that God is indeed alive and well in my town.

Hopefully the stories in this column will inspire and breed more positive change - so that God will always get top billing.

If you live in Hollywood, I encourage you to use this blog as a means for you to share your faith stories as well as any information you may have regarding prayer groups or the like which meet in the Hollywood area.

If you live elsewhere in the world, we pray that this column will be a bright beacon of light, proclaiming the wonderful news that God is truly amazingly present in Tinseltown.

Let's begin blogging. Tell us your thoughts. Ask us questions about God's presence in Hollywood and we will give you the full story. Let's get this blog buzzing.

Share your breaking Hollywood "God" news with us - tell us the big stories. But also, do tell us the little things about how and where you found God today as you walked the streets of Hollywood.

Because…

God shines brighter than all the stars in Hollywood.

1 comment:

SJeanne said...

Hello, Hope, and glad to hear you're going to redeem Hollywood's reputation.
Wordnet has a show coming up the end of this month, Oct 25, called Meeting God in Hollywood. Fr Mike Manning interviews Karen Covell, a producer and author, who gathers Hollywood professionals for prayer. You probably also know about Open Call, a similar (I think) group who gathers people of faith for mutual spiritual support. Just thought you'd like to know.
Sister Jeanne