The Da Vinci Controversy?

BBC NEWS | Entertainment | Church acts against Da Vinci film

I’m a bit surprised by the continuing fuss being made about Dan Brown’s novel The Da Vinci Code. Why is it such a cause for concern to various churches?

I read the book before it hit the best seller lists and felt it was a damn good read. Having read the author’s previous books, I knew he did a lot of research and used it exensively in writing. I also knew that he – as most authors do – takes various liberties in how he uses that research. So, whilst I readily accepted that Opus Dei existed, I felt their portrayal was perhaps more suited to moving the story along rather than to the reality. The same can be said of many of the other “facts” to which the story refers. After all this is a work of fiction, albeit one which has enough truth sewn into its weave to make you wonder.

A wee while later, the book hits the best seller list, there’s talk of a movie, and the waste matter strikes the portable propellor…

I find it hard to believe that people have taken this story as being literally true. Yet, I have seen tv programmes about people who do. Churches are frantic about the misleading way in which it presents Jesus and let’s not even go down the path of how they feel about the idea of Jesus having decendants.

Bottom line, this is a novel. You will find it in the fiction section. If anyone feels their faith or system of belief is threatened by it then perhaps it is their belief that should be put to question rather than this book?


4 thoughts on “The Da Vinci Controversy?

  1. Alex,

    funnily enough I’ve just written an article about The Da Vinci Code for our magazine. Broadly speaking, I think the issue isn’t that it’s a threat to faith, but that an astonishing number of people have taken so much of the fiction in the book to be true – as you say, it’s hard to believe.

    I guess it would be like if someone had a mammoth bestseller which involved a completely bonkers representation of Lewis (and the islands have certainly had their fair share of bizarre representations over the years). It wouldn’t affect our view of Lewis, it would probably create a negative emotional reaction, and would probably move some people to take steps to try to correct the false impression given – but ultimately it wouldn’t really matter what the gullible readers thought of Lewis. The difference in this case of course is that Christians think that what people think of Christ ultimately does matter a great deal.

  2. Hi Iain,

    You’re right, of course. I think sometimes I am far too cynical regarding matters of faith.

    I am intrigued by the article you mention and would be interested in reading it. Which magazine, again? And where could I find a copy?

  3. Alex,
    it’s the magazine for London City Mission supporters. We put the PDFs online at after it’s been mailed out, so the next issue, with the DVC article, should be on the site by the end of this month.

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