Category: Fr. David Guffey, C.S.C.

REV. DAVID GUFFEY, C.S.C., NAMED NATIONAL DIRECTOR OF FAMILY THEATER PRODUCTIONS

frdavidFr. David Guffey, C.S.C. has been named the new National Director here at Family Theater Productions.  We could not be more excited!  Fr. Guffey comes with years of experience in the film and television industry, including a Masters in Film and Television from Loyola Marymount University and several years as our Head of Production.

He has many credits here with us at Family Theater, including several of our Manifest Mysteries series…”Carrying On”, “You Will See”, “Finding Mary”, and “Assumptions”.  He also has spearheaded efforts to increase our presence on the internet by creating content for our Youtube page, social media, and our ministry websites.

As National Director he will be responsible for all activities of Family Theater Productions, both media production and outreach.  Our outreach efforts to young Catholics and other Catholics in the entertainment industry includes Prayer & Pasta, Bible Study, a weekly Holy Hour, daily Rosary, daily Mass, and spiritual direction.

We are very excited about the future here at Family Theater Productions with Fr. Guffey leading the way.  If you are interested in attending any of our events, be sure to check out the calendar on our website.

Ancient Texts Coming On-Line: Vatican Digitizing 82,000 Works from Its Library

Within the confines of Vatican City are documents from the second to the twenty-first centuries collected and preserved by the Catholic Church.  Because of their age and value, many of the books have been carefully guarded with limited access.   Within two years, anyone with a computer will be abel to access them for free.    The documents are being professionally scanned and then will be made available through a Vatican Website.  According to Rome Reports, the project is being done in collaboration with a Japanese IT company.

For Catholics, the search for knowledge is an inherent part of the Christian Faith.   The documents will hopefully help people explore our past and the ways that God’s grace works in history, culture and science.  As Pope John Paul II says in  Gift and Mystery: On the 50th Anniversary of My Priestly Ordination:

“Thanks to meetings and discussions with experts in the natural sciences, with physicists and biologists as well as with historians, I have learned to appreciate the importance of those other branches of knowledge which involve the scientific disciplines; these are likewise capable of attaining the truth from different perspectives. The splendor of the truth–Veritatis Splendor–constantly needs to accompany them, enabling people to meet, to exchange ideas, and to enrich one another.”

 

Watching Movies Together Cut Divorce Rate in Half- A New Study

One of the suggested films for couples to view together

One of the suggested films for couples to view together

 

At Family Theater Productions we have always believed the slogan we created for our radio programs in the 1940s: “The Family That Prays Together Stays Together.”    A recent report shows that  ”The couple that watches movies together, stays together.”  A study of 174 newly married couples showed that a couple watching movies together and talking about it for a half hour afterwards was as effective in keeping a marriage together as other much more in depth and demanding programs.  In fact over the course of the three year study the divorce rate was cut in half.   Professor Ronald Rogge of the University of Rochester and a team of researchers recently published the findings in the Journal of Clinical and Consulting Psychology.

A group of couples either participated in a series of seminars and workshops with communication skills and in depth conversations about issue pertaining to marriage or they were asked to watch a film and then have a discussion using a simple set of questions as a guide.  The movie night discussions required less time and were more effective than the more intense program.  ”It’s incredibly portable. There are really great marriage intervention programs available now but most require trained therapists to administer them. If couples can do this on their own, it makes it so much easier to help them,”   Rogge said  in an article on the University of Rochester Website.

Researchers provided a list of suggested films encouraging couples to view  just five films.   Included in the list:  Anna Karenina (2012), As Good as it Gets (1987), Gone with the Wind (1939) and many others including comedies and dramas.  You can download the list of suggested films and the questions for discussion afterwards.

Are there any films that have helped your marriage relationship grow?  What movies would you add to the list?  Let us know.

Download for Free

Download for Free

 

 

Catholic New Media Conference 2013 – Coming Soon to Boston

Pope Francis in  "Selfie" with  fans.   From The Telegraph.

Pope Francis in “Selfie” with fans. From The Telegraph.

Pope Francis has over 3 million Twitter followers in addition to Facebook.  If Pope John Paul II was the first modern Pope to embrace the potential of media, Holy Father Francis is the first to embrace the potential of new and social media.

He has called Christians to be present and faithful in social media as a way of pointing to Jesus Christ.

The Catholic New Media Conference is planned for October 19, 2013, in Boston Massachusetts.   It a chance for  parishes, schools or just interested individuals  to take their social media activity to a new level.   This is where people are meeting, searching and thinking, so the Church needs to be there too.

Father Roderick is a Featured Presenter

Father Roderick is a Featured Presenter

The conference features world renowned media practitioners including TV, Radio and New Media expert,  Father Roderick Vohnogen;  Elizabeth Scalia, author and Managing Editor of Patheos and Patrick Padley, a social media strategist.

I have attended two of the past Catholic New Media Conferences.  After each event, I left not only inspired but also equipped with new tools and insights for media minsitry.

You can find information at The Catholic New Media ConferenceWebsite.

The True Celebrity: St. Francis of Assisi

St. Francis of Assisi

St. Francis of Assisi

A few years ago when my youngest niece was only 5, she walked in the living room and said, “Mother, I am so mad at you, you have done nothing to make me famous.”

In our world today so many young people seem to long for the attention and status that celebrity offers.  Someyoung  models, singers and actors seem to be willing to go to increasingly scandalous and bizarre lengths to attract attention.

Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus

Sinead O’Connor, the once controversial Irish Singer, recently wrote an open letter to Miley Cyrus on the occasion of the release of Cyrus’s new album.  O’ Connor’s letter was frank and motherly warning Miley to be an artist and not to get co-opted by her own desire for fame or other’s desire to profit from her notoriety.   She writes:

“You are worth more than your body or your sexual appeal. The world of showbiz doesn’t see things that way, they like things to be seen the other way, whether they are magazines who want you on their cover, or whatever… Don’t be under any illusions.. ALL of them want you because they’re making money off your youth and your beauty… which they could not do except for the fact your youth makes you blind to the evils of show business. If you have an innocent heart you can’t recognize those who do not.”

The letter was especially touching because of O’Connor’s admission of her own mistakes and challenges.

October 4 is the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, one of the most famous and recognizable figures of all of history.  Though universally admired now, he was a source of much debate in his day.  His message was challenging to so many groups, in large part because there was little disparity between what he preached and what he lived.  What he preached was a message of love, of wonder, of truth and of faithfulness to God in Jesus Christ.  He lived with a sense of awe amid God’s creation, of compassion for the poor, of peace among people.   He did not need a publicist to become known, becoming famous was not his goal.   True fame, spiritual celebrity,  is never a goal but an outcome of living an exemplary life that points towards something greater.

To my my dear niece and all children like her who desire instant celebrity status, let it be the fame of the sort that Francis and not that of the tabloid star.

More Industry Discussion of Faith and Media

Conference Coming Soon

Conference Coming Soon

 

 

 

 

 

Odyssey Networks is hosting  The Faith and Media Conference in New York, September 30 to October 1, 2013.  The Conference will include panels with religious media experts, including sessions on making documentaries, religious education through media, social media techniques and violence in media.

Odyssey Networks is a coalition of over 100 faith groups and individuals.  It is service of the National Interfaith Cable Association.  For over twenty years, Odyssey Networks has produced and aired thousands of hours of award-winning television programming, including documentaries, made for television movies, and series. Their productions and co-productions have aired on Hallmark Channel, National Geographic, History, BBC-1 and numerous international outlets. In late 2007, they made a commitment to the production of independent theatrical films.

The conference is a reminder of the current interest in faith based content and the increasing role of technology and media in reaching religious audiences.