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'The Last Temptation of Christ'

August 21, 1988

Well, here we go again. I have just read the Orange County section of The Times and see where my esteemed bishop, the caretaker of the Orange County flock of Catholics, has seen fit to settle the word offensive on the controversial movie "The Last Temptation of Christ."

A long spread was given to his protestations while in the same edition of the paper was the story on the Irvine group gathering names for an anti-gay initiative. What I see as offensive is another man's initiative. So be it.

My concern is that the keeper of the flock will somehow not be as vocal or visible with the Irvine issue as he is with the movie. I shudder to think if any priest had bothered to look at my collection of books and seen "The Last Temptation of Christ," "The Greek Passion" and "Zorba the Greek," what might the consequences have been . . . but then I was reading "The Spiral Staircase" when the nuns thought I was only ready for the Nancy Drew series.

I dearly love my church. I am also very happy that I have had the exposure to the Jesuits, Franciscans and the Christian Brothers, to name a few of the elitists of the church. I am also grateful that my mother was the person she was, a person who allowed me the privilege of thinking and asking questions of the church when it was not fashionable.

Shakespeare said it best: "Much Ado About Nothing." If we were offered the profit the picture will make to build low-cost housing, would we refuse the money and brand it tainted? Come on. There are situational ethics and we know who plays them.

CONI STEPHENS

Costa Mesa

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