Monday, October 10, 2005

On the National Mall, It's a Fresh New Testament

"Six years ago Palau—70, born in Argentina, educated in Oregon, once mentored and employed by Billy Graham—had the insight that he might reach more people by creating elaborate events featuring plenty of fun and food along with faith. He invited popular Christian bands, edgy Christian skateboard heroes with a portable half-pipe, and admired Christian athletes—all to perform, and to speak of their faith. He added a section for children including characters from the faith-based VeggieTales videos. In six years, Palau's organization estimates, 4.5 million people have attended its festivals in the United States and Latin America.

"It is spectacle as communication, with testimonials woven in. Christian iconography is scarce. A gospel message floats on the wings of a rock or rap lyric, or in the personal story of a tattooed skateboarder, or in the moral of a tale starring a cucumber." ...

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