It's Wednesday, and that means 'church night' ... a shared meal, some music and prayer in the fellowship hall at First Prez-Midland. Following that, while some enjoy continued fellowship, or head home for the night, others will break up into groups and meet in classrooms around the building.
This fall, that last group includes me. I have joined a study group that is following a 'deep narrative' of Christian theology underlying Tolkien's grand work, "The Lord of the Rings." Our textbook for the course is "The Battle for Middle-Earth: Tolkien's Divine Design in the Lord of the Rings" by Fleming Rutledge. Our class is being led by Pastor Steve Schorr and Jeff Hewitt, who is a member of the Episcopalian church here, in the Tall City. Also playing a prominent role in the class will be Peter Jackson's acclaimed three-film adaptation of LOTR.
Right up front - before the class has even gotten under way - I have some misgivings about both the book, and the film in this setting. But, what if I turn out to be wrong? Better to keep them to myself ... unless those misgivings are actually realized ... I'll keep you posted.