Seeing the Sacred in the Secular: How Secular Films can be Utilized to Engage in Theological Discussions with Dr. Ava E. Carroll, Rev. Kirsty DePree, Mario Sprouse, and Chris Vega.

Explore the sacred in the secular and how movies can be utilized to engage in theological discussions.

All sessions meet in the Labyrinth Room at 10:00am and will be live streamed.

June 11
Theme: Identity
Film: Zootopia

June 18
Theme: God & Identity
Film: Casablanca

June 25
Theme: Jesus Christ & Identity
Film: The Matrix

July 9
Theme: Holy Spirit & Identity
Film: Field of Dreams

July 16
Theme: Church/Community & Identity
Film: The Door - Miu Miu Women’s Tales #5

July 23
Theme: Authority of Scripture
Film: The Book of Eli

July 30
Theme: Revelation & Identity
Film: The Truman Show

August 6
Where Do We Go From Here
Theme: Hope & Identity
Film: The Shawshank Redemption

The optional book for these sessions is Reel Spirituality: Theology and Film in Dialogue by Robert K. Johnston.

Dr. Ava E. Carroll

Rev. Dr. Ava E. Carroll, a Brooklyn native, has served her call through education and ministry for young people for over eighteen years. This call to “provide empowerment through worship and study” led to the founding of Living Flame Ministry in 2004 after earning a Master in Divinity degree from New York Theological Seminary. Living Flame Ministry began as a ministerial resource when her women friends in ministry called upon her for help in researching sermon topics, advice on ministerial direction and consultations/workshops on working with young people in the church. The main thrust of how Living Flame Ministry serves God is through its component entitled Jesus, Popcorn & Me: Seeing the Sacred in the Secular. Secular entertainment media, such as movies, are employed to discuss theological concepts. Initially, Jesus, Popcorn & Me was a Doctor of Ministry degree demonstration project utilized to develop spiritually engaged young adults eighteen through twenty-nine years of age. Dr. Carroll introduced her participants to the idea of viewing a film as a text in order to exegete theological nuggets. She earned her Doctor of Ministry from New York Theological Seminary in May 2016 and has since taught a graduate course based on this unique way of viewing entertainment media. Dr. Carroll is currently writing a textbook and a companion curriculum guide based on Jesus, Popcorn & Me: Seeing the Sacred in the Secular.


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