I spent some time last weekend watching Disney’s new collection of short films. I enjoyed it very much. Several of them I hadn’t seen before. Also included was a brief introduction to each film. Being me, I would have liked to have learned more about the process behind each production. Why did they choose the animation style that they did? Why were story choices made a certain way? What was the original purpose of the shorts? (Some of them weren’t created for the theater.) You know, the basics.
They are an interesting group when looked at as a whole: a folk tale, Hans Christian Anderson, some sequels, new material, and two updates of Disney classics. There is traditional animation, computer generated images and films that are a blend of both. There are two Academy Award winners, and several that had been forgotten in the vault for a decade or more. All this group really has in common is that they are all Disney short animated films released in this century.
Putting these disparate things together and slapping a label on them is an interesting choice. Kind of like gathering a group of people together and saying that they are all one thing. I can’t speak to the realities of other churches, but in mine we are not one thing. We are all under the name “United Methodist”, but we are old, young, and somewhere in the middle. We have different stories of how we got there. Some are recognizable and some sit quietly unobserved. Most of the time I wonder if that label of United Methodist is enough to make us a cohesive group. But some times I know that label is what makes us stronger. I know that we are more together than we ever were apart.