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Faith and the Force: A Guest Blog from Fr. James Worthington

Faith and the Force: A Guest Blog from Fr. James Worthington

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Welcome to all who are running into my writing for the first time.  We are always told to find something we love and then find someone to let you do it.  Well, so far in my life that has worked out, and I am very grateful to our galactic baristas.  I am a priest of the Orthodox Church, and nothing can make me happier.  When I was ordained to the priesthood, I brought with me a beautiful young family and lots of other interests and hobbies.  Among these interests was a love for the Star Wars universe.  Well, it’s really only a galaxy.  I have a clear memory of my aunt taking me to see Return of the Jedi in Yeadon, PA – I was only 5 when it came out, and in my mind’s eye I can still remember the Star Destroyer entering from the top of the screen and the rumble in that theater.  My aunt likes to remind me and how I wouldn’t stop talking about the movie when it was all over. 

            So, from my early childhood, I was a big Star Wars fans.  We never had much money so I decided who would be my friend after judging their Star Wars collection.  That’s only mostly true.  Throughout my life I have been a rather spiritual person – though my sermons often have made references to George Carlin, the Simpsons and the Woodstock concert album.  And references to Philadelphia sports teams.  I’m a tiny bit diverse in my tastes.  I remember the day in 1993 when someone introduced me to Heir to the Empire.  I had no idea that such awesomeness was available in our own galaxy.  That was the first time I read a complete book in one day.

            My life, as with all of yours, has had its rough spots, and I often reflected on my relationship with my father through the lens of Luke and Anakin Skywalker.  It still enlightens my relationship with my old man.  But throughout my formation, the deep mythology of Star Wars was a sort of guide and underlying language with which I could express my own faith.  This is laying it on too thick, but the point is this:  I am a priest in the Orthodox Church, and I think that if we examine the mythological themes and spiritual assumptions of the Star Wars saga, there can be many lessons for enriching our lives in the real world.

            If you have the time, I invite you to add my blogging efforts into your reading schedule.  There may be some benefit in these writings – though I offer no warranty.  Some of them may tend toward my specific religious tradition, but that is just being honest to my experiences.  I can’t pretend to know what other people teach and think.  I’m married, and I don’t even know how my wife processes some things.  I will always come back to the saga in the posts – because hammering people with theology is my weekend job.

            Further, having read many of the Legends books, I look forward to the upcoming new release and discussing their spiritual themes through my posts.  Especially Tarkin.  I also look forward to engaging with all of you in the comments section so that we can each develop a richer understanding of our own particular belief systems.

 Thank you for your time.  May the Force be with you, always.

James has been married to Liane, his college sweetheart, since 1999. That’s when all the fun began. In fact, their honeymoon ended with a viewing of The Phantom Menace on opening night.  He has better memories of that than she does.  He was born and raised in the Philadelphia area, and she is from New Jersey. Together they have three children, the older two being teenagers now. He is the priest at Holy Apostles Orthodox Church, a young mission parish in the beautiful Finger Lakes region of New York. By way of hobbies and interests, James is completely enthralled with the Star Wars universe, an avid yet amateur genealogist and committed sports fan.

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2 Comments

  1. Melinda
    August 31, 2014 at 14:20 Reply

    You had me at “I decided who would be my friend after judging their Star Wars collection.” 😉 That’s a great way to make friends. I have been known to make one my friend as soon as I learn s/he is a Star Wars fan! 😉 🙂

    I’ve never been disappointed. 🙂

    Welcome to Coffee With Kenobi! I hope you like it here. I consider everyone here family — even those I have yet to meet in person. (I have had the honor of meeting in person, and getting to know, many of the contributors. 🙂 )

    I look forward to your future offerings here at CWK. Let the discussions ensue! 😀

    1. adelphotheos
      September 2, 2014 at 22:06 Reply

      Thanks for the warm welcome! This site is great. I’m happy to add on to my family. That is one of the happiest things I have learned in life – related family is good, extended and chosen family makes everything just that much better.
      Like I said, I work weekends, and along with all of my other family responsibilities, I don’t get to fandom events. I would like to in the future, and meet everyone else here.
      I have a few posts I am working on for the future – should Dan and Cory want to host them. In the mean time, I have a few other things over at http://theforceandfaith.blogspot.com.

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