Three Stars – Insightful
Being a preacher’s kid myself (Denny), and having raised two sons in a parsonage, I was intrigued by Stan Foster’s film “Preacher’s Kid.” As both writer and director, Foster reinforces some of the negative stereotypes about “pk’s” while also creating a naïve and unforgiving pastor-father who is unlikely in such a place of responsibility. But with these shortcomings, Foster also creates a moving tale of innocence lost and redemption achieved.
Weaving together several threads into a single theme, Foster reinforces his message by telling it in three different levels. The first is the actual life of Angie King (Letoya Luckett). Although Angie is the twenty-one year old daughter of Bishop King (Gregory Allan Williams), her father continues to treat her as though she is a minor child. This, of course, sets her up for rebellion.
When a traveling show comes through town, Angie is attracted to the lead singer Devlin Mitchell (Tank) and runs away to be with him. This begins the second thread because the show is a play about a small-town girl who leaves her pastor-father when she comes under the spell of smooth-talking city man.
The third layer is the story of the prodigal son. This well known tale of a rebellious who rejects his father only to later recognize his love and return to him, is the sermon Bishop King preaches to sum up the tale.
Although it is often true that pastors put their children under pressure, it is also true that pastors have the opportunity to surround their children with a loving community of people who love God and who love them. This close community works both ways on pastor’s children – giving them a place of profound belonging while putting expectations on them beyond their years. This film tells one side of the tale and as such is well told.
Discussion for those who have seen this film:
1. Unlike other professionals who do not include their families in their professional lives, pastor’s children are often expected to be examples of the pastor’s teaching. What impact do you think this has both for good and for ill on the “Preacher’s Kids?”
2. When Angie’s father does not allow his choir director to date her, he was being selfish. What do you think would have happened had he allowed it? Was Angie set on doing things her own way and would not have dated him anyway?
3. In your experience with churches, have you found the people to be loving toward their pastor and pastor’s children or not?