(2/166/2004) Many often falsely assume that anything sent via e-mail, particularly newsletters sent to subscribers, are open to wide distribution. This chain letter demonstrates the importance of checking with any message's author before forwarding it. This started as a legitimate prayer request, but the author no longer wants it distributed.
SAMPLE CHAIN LETTER TEXT
This is a prayer request coming from Rod Handley. Rod discipled the man who is playing Jesus in Mel Gibson's movie, "The Passion of the Christ" (Jim Caviezel) when he (Jim) attended the University of Washington. Rod just had a conversation with Jim and is passing on some prayer requests regarding the release.
Thought you would be interested in reading this and getting behind it in prayer.
Dear Prayer Partners: I have a very special request to make of you pertaining to the upcoming release of Mel Gibson's movie, "The Passion of the Christ" which will open nationwide on Wednesday, February 25.
Back in the late 1980's, I was on staff at University Presbyterian Church in Seattle,WA primarily working with athletes at the University of Washington. Among the athletes, I discipled included two young JV basketball players, Erik Carlson and Jim Caviezel. Today, Erik is a successful financial planner and is one of our CTC (Character that Counts)Associate Staff members. Jim is one of Hollywood's young and rising stars, and he is playing the title role of Jesus Christ in Mel's movie.
This week, Jim and I talked by phone with the help of Erik who remains one of Jim's closest friends and his accountability partner. My conversation with Jim this afternoon was almost 25 minutes long. Jim specifically has asked for a lot of prayer because this movie is under attack as described below.
[Full Text Omitted At Author's Request]
Thank you for praying for this movie and specifically my friend (Jim).....
Character That Counts http://www.characterthatcounts.org
END CHAIN LETTER TEXT
Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" has been gathering a lot of publicity, going back as far as late 2002. The film, written, produced and directed by Mel Gibson, chronicles the last 12 hours of Jesus Christ's life on the day of his crucifixion. It stars Jim Caviezel as Jesus and the dialog is exclusively in latin and aramaic.
The film has very strong supporters and detractors. Most applaud the film for its gritty and reportedly authentic depiction of the bible story. Others, decry the filmmaker's exploitation of Jesus' life for profit. Still others feel that the film is unfairly critical of Jews and have called for a boycott. Death threats on the movie's stars and crew are certainly believable.
Rod Handley told BreakTheChain.org that he did send a prayer request to his fellowship, but cautioned that e-mail and online versions of his request are inaccurate, and he requests that they not be forwarded:
"Please do not forward the e-mail. There are numerous inaccurate versions posted on the internet....this is why we have no reference to it request on our web site.
"I will say, I'm in full support of the movie and you can summarize the initial prayer request to these simple two areas: 1) Pray for the completion and distribution of the film; 2) pray many (millions) would come to Christ through it."
"The Passion of the Christ" promises to be a blockbuster when it opens on more than 2,000 U.S. screens on February 25, 2004, despite - and in no small part, thanks to - the controversy surrounding it. Nonetheless, BreakTheChain.org reminds you to never forward the words of another person without verifying that the author wishes and condones his/her words to be distributed in this manner. Break this chain.