Religious Studies 25: Pay it Forward Assignment

Picture 1Directions: Answer the six part question below. The page titled, Movie Study Assignment Rubric, will be used to access this assignment. It can be found on the left side (sixth from bottom) under pages. When finished, print off your response and hand in or email it to Mr. S.

Introduction: To be Christian means to be a follower of Jesus Christ; to be “Christ-like”; to act as Jesus Christ would act.  Jesus is referred to as God’s “holy servant” (Acts 4:27).  If we define holy as described in Colossians 3:12-14, then it is easy to see that Jesus was a holy person.  He was compassionate (Luke 15:30; Matt 9:36).  Jesus was kind, patient and forgiving (story of adulterous woman in John 8:3-11).  He was humble (Matt 11:29) and meek (2 Cor 10:1).  But mostly, Jesus always chose love (Eph 5:2; Mark 10:21).  In fact, all the world’s religious traditions celebrate the supreme importance of six spiritual practices, which are,  compassion, forgiveness, hope, kindness, love (as in agape), and conversion (transformation).  All of these spiritual practices were illustrated in this movie.

Assignment: For each of the six spiritual practices listed above, describe one scene from the movie that demonstrates that practice.  Be as specific as you can.

RS 15: Awakenings Assignment

Directions: Answer the question below.  The page titled, Movie Assignment Rubric,  will be used to access this reflection.  It can be found on the left side (fifth from bottom) under pages.  When finished, print off your response and hand in or email it to Mr. S. Remember, Assignments are worth much more than reflection questions.

Introduction: An American bioethicist argues that patients diagnosed to be in a permanent vegetative state (PVS)  should NOT be kept alive.   [To see the article, click on Bioethicist argument]   Dr. Malcolm Sayer’s post-encephalic, catatonic patients  seem to fit the definition of PVS, therefore some people (like the American bioethicist) might argue that euthanasia should be practiced on these patients because they are no longer human beings.

The Statement:

Christian Churches, especially the Catholic Church, would argue, Euthanasia should NOT be used on Dr. Malcolm Sayer’s post-encephalic, catatonic patients because these people are still human beings?

The Question:  Do you agree with the statement above?  Why or why not?

Write a response (at least one typewritten page) answering the above question.  You MUST support your answer using examples from the movie, Awakenings.  Be as specific as possible when describing the scene or person in the movie.  You must use at least three of  Catholic catechism’s seven traits of human beings in your response.

  • Humans are created in the image and likeness of God.
  • Humans are called to happiness and holiness.
  • Humans are rational and free.
  • Humans are moral beings.
  • Humans have passions or feelings.
  • Humans are blessed with a conscience.
  • Humans are able to sin.

You may draw upon other explanations of what a human being is discussed in class to support your argument.

RS 9: Cinderella Man Movie Assignment

Answer four of the following questions.   Your answers  must be five to ten or more sentences long.  Answer it in a word document, save it, and either print it off and hand in or e-mail it to me. Since this is an assignment and more effort is expected, it is worth much more than a reflection.  The rubric on the right titled, Movie Assignment Rubric, will be used to assess your response.

The Sermon on the Mount is all about Christian ethics. Christian ethics stresses the need for grace, compassion, and forgiveness because of human weakness.

Jimmy Johnston says: “Right here. Editorial says this fight is good as murder, and everybody associated with it should be hauled into court and prosecuted afterwards. They say the paper’s gettin’ all sorts of letters from people saying you’re their inspiration – like you saved their lives or somethin’. If you ask me, it’s a lotta crap… but if I’m gonna promote this fight, I’m not gettin’ hung out to dry if somethin’ happens to you”.

1)  As the quote illustrates, boxing is one of the most controversial of all sports. Is it morally wrong for men or women to use violence to earn money?  Is it morally (the distinction between right and wrong or holiness and unholiness) wrong to fight for money, or is boxing just a sport?

Reporter: Bob Johnson, Boston Globe. Two days ago, we ran a story about you giving your relief money back. Can you tell our readers why?

Jim Braddock: “I believe we live in a great country, a country that’s great enough to help a man financially when he’s in trouble. But lately, I’ve had some good fortune, and I’m back in the black. And I just thought I should return it.”

2)  What does Braddock’s response to the reporter say about his conscience (the inner sense of what is right or wrong or what is holy or unholy)?
3)  Braddock refused to use his poverty as an excuse to be dishonest or victimize others. Describe the scenes where he illustrated this?

4)  What issues do people today deal with that is similar to those of the Braddock family? How are today’s issues different? What sorts of new issues will children of the 21st century face?

5)  The scene where Braddock’s son explains why he stole is extremely powerful. Would you steal if your family hadn’t eaten in a week, or if your family’s ability to stay together depended on it? Explain why or why not?

6)  A theme in the movie is the struggle to do what is right or what is holy. Braddock teaches his son to make the correct decision about stealing. Braddock also makes a tough decision when he repays the government aid. Braddock clearly has a moral conscience. What would you do if when waiting for a teacher in his/her room, you see the upcoming test answers?  What does you answer say about your conscience (the inner sense of what is right or wrong or holiness)?

RS 9: A Walk to Remember Assignment

Answer ALL of the following questions.  Your answer for question #1 should be two or three sentences.  Your answer for questions #2, 3, and 4  must be five to ten or more sentences long.  Answer it in a word document, save it, and either print it off and hand in or e-mail it to me. Since this is an assignment and more effort is expected, it is worth much more than a reflection.  The rubric on the right titled, Movie Assignment Rubric, will be used to evaluate your response.

1)  If you were to boil the message of this movie down to one sentence, what would it be?  Write a sentence or two explaining what scenes in the movie led you to this conclusion.
2)  Which of the main characters surprised you the most?  Explain why.

3)  Landon obviously had a “wall” up as far as his dad was concerned.  Eventually, Landon forgives his dad and thanks him for what he did for Jamie.  How might this “wall” have blocked Landon’s faith and experiencing God?  This movie clearly illustrates the power of love.  Describe one scene in the movie that showed how love brought about change.  Did the change brought about by love happen because the character(s) were open to God’s love?  Explain. 1 John 4:8 says Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. Could this be God bringing about changes in the characters as they opened themselves up to God’s love? Why or why not?

4)  What does the movie, A Walk to Remember,  say about faith and love, and their affects on people?  Support your response with examples from the movie.  What types of love were portrayed in the movie? Click on this link to learn about the different  Types of love.

RS 9 Reflection 3: A Walk to Remember

Answer the following two questions.  Your answers for both questions must be a minimum of five to ten or sentences.   Place your response in a word document, save it, and either print it off and hand in or e-mail it to me.  The rubric on the right titled, Reflection Rubric, will be used to evaluate your response.

1)  Eric, Landon’s friend, says, “This girl’s changed you, and you don’t even know it.” What changes in Landon did you notice in the movie?  Identify at least 3 specific changes you noticed and explain at least one of the scenes in the movie that show the change.  How do you explain these changes in Landon?
2)  Jamie tells Landon, “I don’t think getting out (of town) is the problem.  It’s figuring out what you want to do when you get there”. Will “getting out of here” solve problems?  Explain.  What is Jamie really trying to say?

RS 25/35 Reflection: Is Racism a Social Justice Issue in Canada?

Is racism a problem in Canada?  We as Canadians like to see ourselves as a tolerant, multicultural society, but are we.  Read at least three of these articles and you decide.

Racism on the Canadian Prairies

Survey on Racism (2015)

Canadians can’t be smug about racism

Hate Crimes

Views of Aboriginals Worsening

Anti-Racism Protest

Reflection Question:

Explain how racism is different from discrimination or  prejudice? Based on the news articles you’ve read, is racism a problem in Canada?  Support your opinion from evidence from at least one of the articles.  Is racism a problem in Vermilion? Clearly explain why or why not using examples from your experiences or knowledge.

RS 25/35: Remember the Titans Background Info for Assignment

For some  information regarding the story of the Titans and the historical accuracy  behind it, see Remember the Titans.  For some information about T. C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Virginia, USA. Read the History section and Football and Remember the Titans section.  This will help give your some insight into what was happening in the 1970s regarding integration and race relations.

The assignment is located among the pages at the left.  Look for Remember the Titans Assignment


Dead Man Walking Assigment


Amnesty’s annual report (2012) has China topping list of executions with over 1,000, Iran second with 314, US fifth with 43. The United States only country in the Americas practicing execution.  (see YNet News)

The Amnesty International report says 682 executions in 2012 in all countries other than China  were verified to have been carried out last year —only two more than 2011 —as five countries carried through with the death penalty for the first time in many years…The country that had the highest increase in the number of executions was Iraq, with almost double the 68 killed in 2011. (see Amnesty International)

Canada, on the other hand, does not have a death penalty. (see 35 years of abolition) In most cases, the most serious sentence for murder is life imprisonment with no possibility of parole for 25 years. However, if a person has a long history of violent crime, then they can be declared a “dangerous offender.” With this classification they are given an indefinite sentence with little chance of ever being paroled.

An Angus-Reid poll released in March, 2012,  suggests three out of five Canadians (60%) support reinstating the death penalty for murder. (see Amnesty International)

Sources: Amnesty International  and  Religious


Do some research to find out the arguments for and against capital punishment (death penalty)?  There are some links below to start off with.  Then take a stance on the following statement:

Should Canada reinstate the death penalty for criminals who commit first-degree murder?

This does not have to be in the form of a formal essay, but be sure to support you arguments with factual information.  Include in your discussions, the answers to the following questions.

  1. How does Ezekiel 33:11 apply to the question of capital punishment? “As I live, says the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from their ways and live.”
  2. The concept of equal retribution “Life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot” (Deuteronomy 19:21) was actually given in order to control the all-out vengeance that had taken place up to that time. What does Jesus tell us about vengeance?  Read Matthew 5:38-42; Luke 6:27-36; Romans 12:19, and 1 Peter 3:9 to find out.  (Just go to NRSV Bible, and type in the book, chapter and verse.  When you do this, the verse(s) will come up.) How do these scriptures apply to modern day capital punishment?

Here are some links to start off with:

Against arguments:  Catholic Culture and Amnesty International USA

Pro arguments:  Pro death penalty and  Pro death penalty page (keep in mind some of these are websites of individuals, so one has to question their reliablity for statistics, etc.)

Contains both arguments:  Religious Tolerance and  Arguments for and against

Movie Study Assignment Rubric

Dead Poets Society Assignment

The Movie Study Assignment Rubric will be used to grade this assignment.

Directions:  Describe examples from the video Dead Poets Society for each of the following concepts.

  1. An example of an ethical principle followed by one of the movie characters in the movie.  Explain how the movie character’s ethics affected their morality.
  2. An example from each level of Kolberg’s postulates.  It does not matter which stage of each level you use.
  3. An example of an arbitrary law followed or not followed by one of the characters in the movie.
  4. An example of a natural law as it applies to one of the characters in the movie. For example, it could be a movie character who followed or did not follow a natural law.
  5. A movie character whose action portrays aspects of narcissism.
  6. A movie character whose actions indicates inertia.
  7. A movie character from the movie that responds to authority with altruism.
  8. A character from the movie that responds to authority with utilitarianism.
  9. An example of a movie character that depicts personality rather than their true character.
  10. A person of character rather than just represents personality.
  11. An example of a movie character that used a defensive evasion of self-esteem or developing character.  Describe the specific evasion.
  12. An example of a movie character that used an offensive evasion of self-esteem or developing character. Describe the specific evasion.
  13. Which worldview – anthrocentrism or theocentrism – was prevalent in the video?  Explain your answer.

Be sure to describe the scene or movie character thoroughly.   When describing a movie character be sure to clearly describe behaviors that undoubtedly illustrate the concept (narcissism, altruism, etc.) that you want to represent.