The Reluctant Prophet DVD – George Zabelka
View the video here. This film is not simply a biography; it is a visual testament that reflects the breadth of Christian doctrine and a view that the heart of Christianity is living a discipleship of Christ as active non-violence. As a young priest and active duty officer in World War II, Father George Zabelka was the chaplain who offered spiritual reassurance to the crews of the bomber planes (right before the planes left the ground) that dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Father Zabelka remembers that he did not object before the planes took off although he knew what the planes were ordered to do. The severity of those attacks and devastation for civilians caused by those bombs prompted Father Zabelka to question what level of killing is acceptable and to what ends. The conflict grew for him between his identity as a Catholic priest and his identity as a military chaplain who had given religious sanction and moral clearance to the bomber crews. Father Zabelka questioned if it is possible to be a Christian and also to partake in the ethos of war and militarism. After Father Zabelka left the armed forces at the end of WWII, he resolved his question through experiencing the civil rights movement, the ideas of Martin Luther King, Jr., the theologies of nonviolence and the protest movements against the Vietnam War, nuclear proliferation, the military industrial complex, and militarism. In the end Father Zabelka found affirmation of his belief that a discipleship of Christ rejects violence, protests violence, and aspires to live for the good news of peace, bearing love not arms.
A transcript of the video can be viewed here
For endorsements on the movie, click here
Age: High School to Adult.