The Barna Update, 7/10/04 [Excerpts]: Mel Gibson’s controversial movie about the last twelve hours of the life of Jesus, The Passion of the Christ, stunned the movie industry by becoming the eighth highest-grossing domestic film of all time. Much of that success can be attributed to the fervent support of churches, many of whom labeled the movie as one of the greatest evangelistic tools in history. A new national survey of more than 1600 adults, conducted by The Barna Group, examines not only how many people saw the movie, but what impact the film had on their life.
If the statistics concerning the spiritual inclinations of viewers are projected to the U.S. population, then the study would estimate that approximately 36 million adults who saw the movie were born again Christians and an additional 31 million were not born again.
Overall, one out of every ten viewers of The Passion (10%) indicated that they had changed some aspect of both their religious beliefs and practices in response to the movie.
Among the most startling outcomes drawn from the research is the apparent absence of a direct evangelistic impact by the movie. Despite marketing campaigns labeling the movie the “greatest evangelistic tool” of our era, less than one-tenth of one percent of those who saw the film stated that they made a profession of faith or accepted Jesus Christ as their savior in reaction to the film’s content. Equally surprising was the lack of impact on people’s determination to engage in evangelism. Less than one-half of one percent of the audience said they were motivated to be more active in sharing their faith in Christ with others as a result of having seen the movie.
LifeSiteNews.com,9/10/04: Pregnant mothers from Quebec whose unborn children are beyond 24 weeks gestation, are being sent to Wichita, Kansas for late-term abortions, at the private clinic of controversial abortionist George Tiller. Each procedure costs Canadian taxpayers at least $5000.00 U.S. and the procedure entails mortal danger not only for the unborn child but also for the mother.
While late-term abortions are not illegal in Quebec, there are few abortionists willing to commit the gruesome procedure, especially since the unborn child is fully formed at the late stage of pregnancy and can in most cases survive outside the womb from 21 weeks gestation.
“Most unborn children at that advanced stage of pregnancy can survive outside the womb. Why are we spending $5000.00 US for an elective abortion when health dollars are so tight?” asked Gillian Long of Campaign Life Coalition.
Last year 30 Quebec late-term abortions were committed in Kansas and New York. So far this year from April to August, nine women have been sent to Kansas for abortions.
LifeSiteNews.com spoke with Troy Newman of the U.S. pro-life group Operation Rescue West. Newman keeps close tabs on Tiller’s clinic and was shocked that Canada would entrust its citizens to “Tiller the Killer” for care. Newman noted that Tiller “has been dubbed ‘Tiller the Killer’ not only for his abortion business, but also for the frequency with which women are sent to hospital by ambulance after receiving his abortion services.”