Tuesday, October 03, 2006

The best that I can offer

Last night I had the good fortune to be a part of the Kindling's Muse panel, the subject was about "Retailing God".
You can listen to the Podcast at www.thekindlings.com

Moderated by veteran broadcaster Dick Staub, we explored the highs and lows of how small businesses are retailing God, from the Jesus bobble heads and Last supper breath mints to the widely popular kitsch t-shirts such as Jesus is my Homeboy. And on the extreme other end, luxury faith retailer VOX SACRA.

No doubt, Jesus has somehow found His way into our pop culture portrayed as an icon and superhero. Hundreds of thousands of inexpensive t-shirts are sold every year copying corporate logo's and twisting to them read "My Lord is King" (visualize Burger King logo).

Last night's conversation explored the idea "How far is too far" when retailing God? Is any reasonable respect given to Christ's image when He is reduced to plastic dolls and a hug lovin goodbuddy on cheap t-shirts? What ever happened to the "treasured" artwork commissioned on behalf the Church? What ever happened to ornate architecture leaving one in awe of the glory of God? Have we become a society where worshipping in a warehouse is deemed cool and attending a traditional church is no longer relevant? Has the extent of our ability to open conversations about faith been reduced to portraying Christ as a comic book character on a $12.00 t-shirt because the timeless message of forgiveness, grace and redemption are too bothersome. Or perhaps...simply not profitable?

While I drove home last night, my mind swirled around trying to understand it all. I found solace in the fact that VOX SACRA is a genuine brand with a story to tell. I am deeply proud of the design and production quality that we have invested into creating our garments, the small attention to detail, the unique story telling designs. When asked do I ever feel guilty about selling expensive garments, my response is "not at all". Much thought and care have gone into our products...people stop me on the street and ask me about my shirt and scarves frequently, conversations about faith are opened. VOX SACRA is the best I can offer.

love+peace
shawn

3 Comments:

Blogger Ron Cole said...

Hi Shawn, I'm a frequent visitor of Dick's podcasts. I just want to say how mauch I enjoyed your story, and conversation around "retailing God.". As someone who has also set foot to the narrow path in a faith journey, and as an artist...I;m always trying to engage faith and culture. I think in that tension, we are opened up into what I call redemptive cultural conversation. I checked out your website, awesome suff...I know where I'll be doing my christmas shopping. Anyways, Bless you Shawn in your journey as you engage your faith in the world of fashion culture. Pax...Ron+

10:12 AM  
Blogger Ron Cole said...

Hi Shawn, I'm a frequent visitor of Dick's podcasts. I just want to say how mauch I enjoyed your story, and conversation around "retailing God.". As someone who has also set foot to the narrow path in a faith journey, and as an artist...I;m always trying to engage faith and culture. I think in that tension, we are opened up into what I call redemptive cultural conversation. I checked out your website, awesome suff...I know where I'll be doing my christmas shopping. Anyways, Bless you Shawn in your journey as you engage your faith in the world of fashion culture. Pax...Ron+

10:13 AM  
Blogger Katy said...

I really enjoyed the podcast, and your shirts are beautiful. God bless your work.

5:46 PM  

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