Two Movies Connected to the March Intention

Mar 13, 2024 | Blog Articles

Of Men and Gods by Xavier Beauvois (France, 2010, 120 min.)

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize and the Ecumenical Jury Prize at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival, “Of Gods and Men” by director Xavier Beauvois immerses viewers into the profound lives of Cistercian monks residing in Algeria during the tumultuous civil war that engulfed the nation from 1991 to 2002. Crafted with a script inspired by real events and featuring exceptional performances, Beauvois skillfully guides us through the hearts of eight monks. These men, after years devoted to prayer, tending the land, and aiding the local community in the face of disease and poverty, are confronted with a pivotal choice. In the midst of growing violence, they embark on a communal discernment to decide whether to abandon their monastery or steadfastly remain, prepared to sacrifice their lives. Pope Francis’s timely words resonate, urging us to remember that prayerful discernment demands a willingness to listen — to the divine, to others, and to the ever-evolving reality that continually challenges us. As we join our prayers with the Pope, let us remember and honor those courageous religious individuals around the world who, like the characters in the film, risk their lives for the sake of the Gospel.

Romero by John Duigan (USA, 1989, 105 min.)

In this film, actor Raúl Juliá gives perhaps the best performance of his career in the role of Monsignor Romero, the fourth archbishop of San Salvador, a committed pastor who in his Sunday homilies denounced numerous human rights violations and publicly expressed his solidarity with the poor and the victims of political violence in his country. Monsignor Romero died a martyr’s death while celebrating the Eucharist in a small chapel. Let us enter into this film story and think about the cries of the people that Monsignor Romero heard and the way he offered his life for God and his brothers and sisters. Let us reflect on these words of Pope Francis in his apostolic exhortation on holiness in today’s world: “The questions of our people, their suffering, their battles, their dreams, their trials, their worries possess an interpretational value that we cannot ignore if we want to take the principle of the Incarnation seriously. Their wondering helps us to wonder ourselves, their questions question us.” (Gaudete et exsultate n. 44). Let us pray with the Pope that the martyrs of the 20th century like Monsignor Romero “may infect the Church with their courage and missionary impulse”.


The Pope’s Official Prayer Network

We pray that the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick confer to those who receive it and their loved ones the power of the Lord and become ever more a visible sign of compassion and hope for all