In her book Reaching Out Without Dumbing Down, Marva Dawn describes her experience at the 1987 Vancouver World’s Fair, where the Christian pavilion’s presentation utilized glitzy double-reversed photography and flashing lasers. “When I tried to explain my qualms about the production to an attendant who had asked me how I liked their “show,” she protested that it had saved many people. I asked, “Saved by what kind of Christ?”

“If people are saved by a spectacular Christ, will they find him in the fumbling of their own devotional life or in the humble services of local parishes where pastors and organists make mistakes? Will a glitzy portrayal of Christ nurture in new believers his character of willing suffering and sacrificial obedience? Will it create an awareness of the idolatries of our age and lead to repentance? And does a flashy, hard-rock sound track bring people to a Christ who calls us away from the world’s superficiality to deeper reflection and meditation?”

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