Here’s the latest from the crossroads of faith, media & culture: 09/03/21

What’s up in Fall of 2021 from a Faith, Media & Culture POV? Here are some highlights. 

SEPTEMBER
September is Gospel Music Heritage Month. It’s also National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, National Guide Dog Month, National Preparedness Month, National Prostate Health Month, Pain Awareness Month and National Recovery Month. The latter is a time set aside to recognize the gains made by those in addiction recovery and acknowledge that far too many don’t live to tell their stories. A record number of people died from drug overdoses in the United States in 2020: more than 93,000. Giving to any of those causes is certainly worthy.

Skiptember! A nifty handle Skip1 Founder Shelene Bryan hopes will bring attention to her organization which supports efforts to fight world poverty by building and renovating kitchens within orphanages and schools in impoverished areas, assisting in food distribution and feeding programs in places where kitchens can’t be built and helping with clean water and sustainable agricultural initiatives. They do this “one Skip at a time” by encouraging folks who are grateful to be living in the land of plenty to forego one little bit of luxury in solidarity and empathy toward those who have much less – and donate the money saved to help them out. Among her movement’s most ardent supporters is her friend and Skip1 Board member Candace Cameron Bure (Fuller House, Aurora Teagarden) – and then there’s that guy from Medium who cut this PSA for them.

You can find out more about Skiptember here.

SEPTEMBER 10:  Show Me the Father (in theaters)

The Kendrick Brothers are actually out with two new films this month. Known for faith-based dramas like War Room, Courageous, Facing the Giants and Fireproof, this first one is also the duo’s first documentary. The film weaves the stories of four real-life fathers into a hope-filled and timely reminder of the importance of fathers in families and society.

SEPTEMBER 17: The Starling (in select theaters)/September 24 (streaming on Netflix) 

The film stars Melissa McCarthy (BridesmaidsIdentity Thief) and Chris O’Dowd (BridesmaidsThis is 40) as a married couple who recently suffered some hardships. Theodore Melfi (Hidden Figures) directs the film about overcoming unexpected trials and having complete faith in the strength of love and marriage.

SEPTEMBER 24: Courageous Legacy (in theaters)

The Kendricks’ second film release of the month is a remastered re-release of their successful 2011 movie Courageous. This new version opens with the brothers sharing stories of worldwide impact the film (also a celebration of fatherhood) has had on real people over the past decade. The movie also includes some new scenes and an updated ending.

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OCTOBER 12: Tuttle Twins (streaming via Angel Studios)

The TV show which I told you about back in January is based on the bestselling kids book series by Connor Boyack and aims to teach kids the values of freedom. New episodes will drop every two weeks.

Showrunner Daniel Harmon says “Parents are frustrated and deeply concerned about ideas being presented to our kids that are in conflict with the fundamental values of freedom. Passing new laws or banning bad ideas isn’t the answer, it’s on us to teach our children to think critically and understand the core values of a free society. While this show isn’t the whole solution, it’s absolutely a start.”

Last spring Tuttle Twins broke the record for the #1 crowdfunded kids show in world history. The award-winning books have sold over 2.5 million copies to date.

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DECEMBER 25: American Underdog (in theaters)

Looking a bit further down the road, this film from the creators of I Can Only Imagine and I Still Believe tells the inspiring true story of legendary quarterback Kurt Warner (Zachary Levi of Shazam! and Chuck) who through faith and determination rose from stocking groceries to Super Bowl MVP and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The movie centers on how the support of his wife Brenda (Anna Paquin of The Piano) and the encouragement of his family, coaches and teammates helped him persevere through many hardships to become the champion the world now knows. Dennis Quaid also stars as St. Louis Rams Coach Dick Vermeil.

 

Encourage one another and build each other up – 1 Thessalonians 5:11

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