St. Gregory’s University student calls being Miss Indian Oklahoma 2011 an ‘honor’

Devon Frazier, a sophomore at St. Gregory’s University in Shawnee, Okla., says she “felt completely honored” when she heard her name called for the “prestigious title” of Miss Indian Oklahoma 2011 at the Oklahoma Federation of Indian Women’s annual pageant in McAlester, Okla.

“My first reaction was to look at my mom – who made me stay up night after night to perfect and critique every little detail – and I knew I made her proud whether I had won or not,” Frazier said in a statement.

“We are very proud of Devon,” said Benedictine Father Nicholas Ast, St. Gregory’s vice president for mission and identity. “She is an exemplary young woman and represents St. Gregory’s University and the community well in all she does. We are pleased that she has this opportunity, and we support her fully.”

This spring Frazier was chosen for the title by a panel of judges based on her performance in several areas, including personal interview, essay, traditional dress, talent, platform and her answer to an impromptu question. The theme of  the 2011 pageant was “Honoring Our Mother’s Journey by Keeping Our Eyes on the Future and Our Hearts in the Past.”

According to the pageant’s custom, Frazier was presented with a silver crown and cedar box. Her reign will last one year. Continue reading

Media Notebook: Reissued ‘Sacrifice’ shows response to sin, fear, despair amid crisis

By John P. McCarthy

Catholic News Service

A remastered edition of Russian auteur Andrei Tarkovsky’s final movie, “The Sacrifice,” has arrived on DVD from Kino International, a quarter-century after its theatrical release.

Tarkovsky defected from the Soviet Union two years before making the Swedish-language film, which was shot by one of Ingmar Bergman’s great collaborators, cinematographer Sven Nykvist. During the editing process, Tarkovsky was diagnosed with lung cancer, and he died within a year at age 54.

It’s difficult to imagine a more fitting swan song. A deeply personal yet universal work, both elegiac and forward-looking, “The Sacrifice” depicts a faith journey and, specifically, an intellectual’s response to sin, fear and despair.

Emblematic of Tarkovsky’s small but significant oeuvre, the parable also evokes Shakespeare, Chekhov and Bergman. In fact, on first encountering its slow, ritualistic pacing, you’re tempted to dismiss it as a parody of one of Bergman’s bleaker films.

Gradually, however, its tight structure and incisive hopefulness emerge. “The Sacrifice” has humor and heft, tension and tenderness. Farcical moments depressurize the atmosphere of existential terror while keeping self-seriousness and pretension at bay.

A sympathetic protagonist, subtly played by Bergman regular Erland Josephson, is essential to the drama’s success. Continue reading