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David Thompson
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July 20, 2009

Comments

Brian H

"My father was born shortly after the Wright brothers. He could barely believe that I went to the Moon. But my son Tom was five. And he didn't think it was any big deal." Charles Duke, Apollo 16.

A wonderful film. Bless 'em all.

SG

"Bless 'em all."

I like the bit where the atheist viewer complains about the Apollo 8(?) crew using religious language. Jesus wept.

David

Yes, given the circumstances, there’s a certain meanness to the complaint.

I think one of the more touching scenes is when Collins is talking about the world tour the Apollo 11 crew were sent on: “Everywhere we went, people came up to us and said, ‘We did it.’ Not ‘You Americans did it,’ but ‘We did it. We human beings did it.’ I thought that was a wonderful thing. Ephemeral, but wonderful.”

TDK

This film is on tonight on Channel 4 (UK) 12:10am

AntiCitizenOne

Complete and utter waste of money though.

James S

"Yes, given the circumstances, there's a certain meanness to the complaint."

Madalyn Murray O'Hair sounds like she was a bit of a nut.

"O'Hair filed a lawsuit with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in regards to the Apollo 8 Genesis reading. O'Hair wished the courts to ban US astronauts — who were all Government employees — from public prayer in space. The case was rejected by the US Supreme Court for lack of jurisdiction."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madelyn_Murray_O%27Hair

David

“Madalyn Murray O’Hair sounds like she was a bit of a nut.”

Didn’t O’Hare apply for Soviet citizenship or something? Much as I’m in favour of the separation of church and state, it does take a certain meanness of spirit, as it were, to object to astronauts reading from Genesis on Christmas Eve. Bearing in mind their somewhat unusual circumstances. I’m not sure what she would have made of the fact that Buzz Aldrin received communion on the Moon’s surface – a detail NASA saw fit not to mention at the time.

Horace Dunn

Buzz Aldrin received communion on the Moon's surface? How did that happen? I thought you needed a priest for that sort of thing. Or perhaps the Soup Dragon was secretly ordained.

David

Horace,

Apparently Aldrin took a small kit with him.

“In the radio blackout, I opened the little plastic packages which contained the bread and the wine. I poured the wine into the chalice our church had given me. In the one-sixth gravity of the moon, the wine slowly curled and gracefully came up the side of the cup… It was interesting for me to think: the very first liquid ever poured on the moon, and the very first food eaten there, were the communion elements.”

http://www.liturgy.co.nz/blog/first-communion-moon/1203

Horace Dunn

David

Thank you for that. I must admit that I'd never heard about that before and initially took your remark to be a joke. All I can say is that it's a funny old world.

Even when it's not this one.

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