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José Sánchez del Río biopic inspires 14-day devotional series

Mirando al Cielo trailer

D'Place Entertainment | Fair Use via YouTube

J-P Mauro - published on 04/13/23

Producers assembled 14 US Catholic faith leaders to give presentations on the film's Catholic themes in a series of brief, concise videos.

A new film that is illuminating the life and deeds of St. José Sánchez del Río, Mirando Al Cielo, is coming to US theaters on Tuesday, April 18. While Aleteia has an upcoming review of the film in the works, today we are taking a look at a beautiful devotional video series that the producers of the film have released in order to foster relationships with this important saint, as well as highlight some of the key Catholic themes of the film.

Fathom Events and Mediaquest describe the series, titled 14 Days on the Way with San José Sánchez del Río, as a “ministry companion” to the film. The series drew on the expertise of 14 US Catholic faith leaders, who each give presentations on a different aspect of the life of St. José Sánchez del Río, as portrayed in the film.

Each installment of the 14-day devotional series features a scene from the movie, as well as a concise explanation of the Catholic themes of the scene. For example, the first day of the series features the scene in which José is arrested and held captive in a church by Mexican soldiers. As the cage door is closed, he remarks to his fellow inmate, Lorenzo, that they were standing in the same church in which José was baptized.

Catholic rapper Communion takes over the devotional video from there, offering a reflection on the theme of “remembering and living out our baptism.” Communion outlines three ways in which we can live out our baptismal calling on a daily basis: the Eucharist, Confession, and a strong prayer life. 

“We know that the Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life. I try to make it a point to go to daily Mass and receive Holy Communion as often as possible, because when we receive Holy Communion, our human nature is being transformed into the divine nature. Also, I try to have recourse to the sacrament of Confession as often as possible. Every time we fall, we have to get up again, and the sacrament of Confession is such a powerful sacrament of healing. It cleanses our soul of all our sins through the blood of Christ.”

Keeping the talk in conversational tones, Communion goes on to note that an active prayer life is immensely important to the idea of living out one’s baptism. He reminds that prayer is our “connection to God,” and this connection needs only a few moments, in which we take time to reflect on God’s blessings, to cultivate. 

Each of the videos produced for the 14 Days on the Way with San José Sánchez del Río series offers similar food for Catholic thought that gives us a lot to contemplate and reflect on in just 3-5 minutes. Other Catholic presenters for the series include: 

Fr. David Guffey, CSC, National Director at Family Theater Productions; Jason and Crystalina Evert, Chastity Project;Alexander Dee, Saints Alive Podcast; Allison Gingras, Reconciled to You; Fr. Edward Looney, podcaster, author and president of the Mariological Society; Sr. Nancy Usselmann,FSP, Director of the Pauline Center for Media Studies; Sr. Julia Darrenkamp, FSP;Communion, the Catholic rapper; Monét Souza, A Message of Hope and host of Anchored on CatholicTV;Maria Vargo, actress, singer/songwriter, director, and producer; Fabiola Garza, illustrator and author; Craig Syracusa, Walk in Faith; and Sr. Chelsea Bethany Davis, FSP.

While the video series has been released in full, it is advised not to rush through this two-week faith excursion. When viewed at the beginning of the day, it can set a faithful tone that just might reveal a new aspect of our own faith to shine through the monotony of the day-to-day. 

Click here to get started watching 14 Days on the Way with San José Sánchez del Río.

Visit Fathom Events to find tickets to Mirando Al Cielo at a theater near you.

CatholicismDevotions and FeastsMovies
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