It's been 8 years since Mel Gibson premiered his controversial movie The Passion of the Christ. I remember we went and watched it in the movie theater when it was released and that's the last time I watched it until last week. When the DVD version was released, I bought it on the first day and promptly added it to my collection, but I've never opened the box. Last week we watched the first half in RCIA and finished it tonight. Although it was not a conscious decision not to watch it again, I do understand now why I've never opened the box. To say that it makes me uncomfortable is an understatement. It's extremely difficult to watch, especially if you have a faith in Jesus Christ.

I remember reading all of the press (prior to the release) about Gibson and the filming of the movie and wondering... "What's the big deal? It's JUST a movie." But now I understand. Viewing it comes with a cost. I can't imagine the price that was paid to act it out... or to produce it... or even to film it. The process must have been grueling.

I am thankful that Gibson saw it through to the end and that he didn't let his vision be distorted or watered down. I am, grateful that those involved persevered. It is a gift to everyone who views it. I have lots of opinions and particular scenes that stick in my mind, but I'd rather you watch it for yourself. It will impact each person differently. If you haven't watched it before or even if you have and it's been a while... I strongly encourage you to watch it again.