The Vatican has a Real Sister Act in the Heart of Screenland!
Seems logical, but who knew that located in Culver City, CA home to MGM and Sony Studios and officially known as “The Heart of Screenland” you’d find the hippest media savvy Sisters in the Catholic Church? I’ve driven by Pauline Books and Media located at 3908 Sepulveda Boulevard between Washington Place and Venice Boulevard for years. And up until now mistakenly thought it was stuffy church supply shop reserved for Priests only. Boy was I in for a surprise. Not only is this inspirational bookstore open to the public its run by a real Sister act. The Daughters of St. Paul, also known internationally as the Pauline Sisters, are a lot like the “Blues Brothers” - like the characters in the iconic 1980 movie "they’re on a mission from God" and just like Jake and Elwood Blues it’s show business!
The Pauline Sisters invest their lives to bring hope and love through our contemporary means of communication. These are a talented group of filmmakers, singers, authors, designers and artists. One of the local celebrities here at the bookstore is Sister Rose Pacatte whose secular movie reviews are becoming the go-to stop on-line for moviegoers. She’s a real movie lover and her unbiased reviews of the latest releases are on-the-money and fun to watch. Just this last Thursday Sister Rose attended the premiere of “Journey 2” staring Dwayne Johnson, aka The Rock. You can check out her movie reviews at the YouTube Channel, “SisterRoseACO” or go to, “SisterRoseMovies.com.” In addition she’s the co-author of the “Lights, Camera, Faith” book series. These books highlight the spiritual message in contemporary films. On-line reviewer Thomas H. Griffith had this to say about “Lights, Camera, Faith,” “What a wonderful resource! Finally, a book that looks at contemporary films--yes, secular films, no less--tells what the story is about, and offers some insightful questions to use with discussion groups. The best part is that it doesn't use all those awful "Christian" movies--you know, the kind where no one cusses, kisses, copulates or cogitates outside of certain predefined parameters.”
If this sounds interesting you may want to mark your calendar because every second Saturday of the month is movie night. Doors open at 6pm, and the movie starts promptly at 6:30pm in their upstairs screening room that seats forty comfortably. Next screening will be “School of Rock” starring Jack Black followed by a spiritual discussion regarding the main character’s issue with sloth. Donations are accepted for refreshments.
For a real treat you may want to join the Sisters for “Soup & Cinema Divina.” They will be screening the new film “The Way” by Emilio Estevez, starring his father Martin Sheen, on Saturday, Feb. 25 at 6:30pm (begins promptly). They will follow this up each Tuesday of Lent, from 7pm -9pm with soup, reflection and prayer on “The Way.” As they put it, it’s “a creative approach to our Lenten journey…” The program is gratis though donations are appreciated for supper and the Soup & Cinema Guide.
When you walk in Pauline Books and Media for the first time I can guarantee, whether you meet Sister Rose, Sister Tecla, Sister Jennifer, Sister Madonna, or any other member of the staff, you’ll be welcomed with a joyful heart and a sense of humor. The bookstore is stocked with inspirational books, DVD’s, and music, and is open Mon-Sat, 10am – 6pm. Parking is free. There is also a charming little chapel located in the building as well. It was designed by one of the Sisters and is the perfect place for a refreshing break from the hustle and bustle of life in Los Angeles. After a visit with the Sisters I always leave feeling recharged and inspired. It’s a little gem - discovered right here in “The Heart of Screenland,” Culver City, California.