There's been much buzz on the internet and in magazine's about author Dan Brown's newest novel, "The Lost Symbol". More intrigue, more secret societies, more codes, more Masons, more Knights Templar, more albino monks. I will admit that I have never bought nor read any of his books. I'm not much of a fiction reader. I did see the movie of "The DaVinci Code", and was underwhelmed.
But the real reason I have difficulty bringing myself to read a Dan Brown book is because I know the roots of his theology. I have personal knowledge of the influence that helped shaped young Danny Brown's mind in his youthful days at Christ Church in Exeter, NH. I am far too familiar with the stories he was told in his Sunday School class.
Yes, if you want to know how Dan Brown might have come to believe that Jesus and Mary Magdelene had a fling... and a child... it was probably the logical conclusion young Danny reached when he heard his Sunday School teacher proclaim that, "Jesus was the first politician!" I mean, it certainly would be in keeping with politicians of the modern era... not to mention his own time... if Jesus were to father a child outside of marriage!
It's too weird, this six-degrees of separation which is really more like a degree-and-a-half that I have with Dan Brown. The man who has made millions writing books about Opus Dei and causing the Roman Catholic Church to aid in his publicity by putting his efforts on the "Do Not Read EVER" list... is the blonde-haired boy who sang the role of Amahl in Amahl and the Night Visitors. (I was one of the peasant extras in our church's production.) His parents and sister were also active in the church, so I know the family fairly well.
Which made it all the more surreal when I kept having friends tell me, "Oh, My God! You have to read The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown! It is soooo good!" It should be noted that most of the friends who have really loved his novel are ex-Roman Catholics. When I finally realized, looking at the book one day in Borders, that Dan Brown was Danny, I laughed out loud at the recognition. It's actually kind of fun knowing that I knew the celebrity before he was famous.
Better yet: I know his Sunday School teacher!