By immersing himself within the religious community of ICF, Christian Lutz introduced himself in a truly alternative society, brilliantly organized.
What he thought would be a closed environment, with its codes and beliefs, quickly appears to be of a fascinating complexity. Widely open to the outside world thanks to an active proselytism, the Church is revealing of the worldâ€™s issues: loss of points of reference and values, need to be part of a group, thoughts on how to live together and the necessity to counter individualism, mutual aid and solidarity within the community.
Through sharp images, Christian Lutz enhances the process of this charismatic evangelist movement that knows how to use ultramodern means to keep its participants and gain new ones in Jesus name. Its methods are similar to the best marketing campaigns and would make green with envy the most sophisticated TV shows.
Here, everything is controlled, even emotion. Or should we say, emotion first. The massive gatherings, with people of all ages, turn into an emotional wave that comes close to trance or hysteria. Confessions are made holding a microphone, in front of giant screens that show the face of the speaker to the whole crowd. Christian tradition revisited, updated, in a mix of culture and counterculture.
All the fields of human relations are taken in charge by a constant offer of extra worship activities: speed dating, rock concerts, holidays, blood donations, etc. In addition to that, there are of course also weddings, baptisms, sermons. The place and clothes arenâ€™t important. Worships take place in a stadium, aside a camping swimming pool, wearing jeans, sneakers, and a cap. What matters is being together. To create a space of mutual recognition and membership. A space of identity.