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Responses to The Da Vinci Code

02 November 2006

Westminster Abbey
(features in the book but not the film)
No special programme, but production of a small booklet to explain why the Abbey has "grave theological reservations" about the book, pointing out some of its inaccuracies when Dan Brown describes Westminster Abbey.

"We're not making a big thing of it. We just think people might like to hear an alternative version."
Duncan Jeffery, director of communications

Winchester  Cathedral

(features in the film)
An exhibition, including an hour-long trail through the cathedral, ending with a prayer labyrinth. Also running a programme of talks and discussions, including a talk by the Revd Steve Hollinghurst on 13 June.

"What we're saying is come and think through these things for yourselves. Think about the symbols that Dan Brown has used, but not with the spin that Dan Brown has put upon them."
John Guille, Archdeacon of Winchester

Lincoln Cathedral

(doubles as Westminster Abbeyfor the film)
An exhibition in two parts covers the filming in the Cathedral and addresses issues raised by the novel. Also hosts "Da Vinci-style tours" decoding the cathedral itself, and a programme of talks.

"The book and the film touch nerves about openness, power and women, and the nature of Jesus. We want to engage with the ideas in the book and film creatively."
Mike West, Canon Chancellor of Lincoln Cathedral

The Temple Church

(features in the novel and film)
The Master of the Temple Church, the Revd Robin Griffith-Jones, continues to give weekly talks on The Da Vinci Code and the Christian faith, usually on a Friday at 1 p.m., but check www.templechurch. com for details. No other events are planned.

"My talks and my book end with the Easter story. If we can start with The Da Vinci Code and the Priory of Sion and end in the Easter garden with Jesus and Mary Magdalene, then it seems like we've made progress."
Robin Griffith-Jones, Master of the Temple Church

Rosslyn Chapel, Edinburgh

(features in the novel and film)
Not planning any "Da Vinci-ish" events or special tours, but will be open to visitors as normal. The chapel is "first and foremost an historic building that is also used as a church" and does not feel the need to enter a debate or promote itself.

"We're not saying our life now revolves around the film of Dan Brown's book. It's part of Rosslyn's rich tapestry that's grown up, and we shall enjoy it. The building, enigmatic as it is, will remain unmoved by the whole furore."
Stuart Beattie, director Rosslyn Chapel

Church Army

From 20 May, Church Army evangelist Andrew Wooding will publish seven daily posts on the organisation's "word-on-the-web" looking at passages of the Bible which relate to aspects of The Da Vinci Code in "bite-sized chunks". Visit www.word-on-the-web.co.uk

"Rather than critiquing the book and the film, I will be exploring what God might be saying to us through the popularity of the book and what nerves it touches."
Andrew Wooding, Church
 Army evangelist

Church of England

Has set up a dedication section on its website: "Da Vinci Code: making your mind up", inviting people to consider the facts and fiction for themselves. Visit www.cofe.anglican.org/info/davinci

 "One of The Da Vinci Code's appeals is that we all like secrets. But its claims about Jesus are cracked. In fact, sometimes the real truth is stranger than fiction. Get exploring!"
Richard Burridge, Dean of King's College, London, which is featured in the book


Nicky Gumbel has written a book in response to The Da Vinci Code, and Alpha are placing themed promotional postcards in racks in cinemas nationwide.

"The Da Vinci Code raises questions about Jesus and who he was. . . It appeals a lot to young people, as does Alpha - it's the right market and the right culture; so we've gone for it."
Mark Elsdon Dew, communications director

The Christian Enquiry Agency

The CEA has launched a "scratch-for-truth project" which aims at introducing people to the "real Jesus". The 250,000 scratchcards, distributed to all UK cinemas, feature ten claims made in Dan Brown's novel. Filmgoers are invited to scratch to discover whether they are fact or fiction. The scratchcards include the offer of a free booklet, Cracking The Da Vinci Code by the Revd Mark Stibbe, which examines the ten claims.

"We want to set the record straight and introduce people to the real story of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and events surrounding the life of arguably the most influential figure in history."
Jeff Bonser, CEA director


The producers of The Da Vinci Code film have sought to head off accusations of associating with a work that attacks the Church by setting up a website giving a platform to some of Dan Brown's fiercest critics. Includes contributions from Chuck Colson and the President of Fuller Theological Seminary. Visit

Dan Brown

The author's own website includes background information about the author and the book and includes a candid FAQ section. Visit www.danbrown.com

"Controversy and dialogue are healthy for religion as a whole. Religion has only one true enemy - apathy - and passionate debate is a superb antidote."
Dan Brown, author of The Da Vinci Code


Scratching the itch: the Christian Enquiry Agency is also targeting filmgoers at UK cinemas with scratchcards to help them descipher the truth behind The Da Vinci Code

richard watt

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