Marvel Superheroes and Everyday Faith
Russell W. Dalton
What makes someone a hero? In the early 1960’s the image of a superhero was someone with a square jaw, a muscular build, and a quick smile whose biggest personal problem was trying to keep their girlfriends from guessing their secret identities. Then, writer Stan Lee and artists Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko created a group of superheroes who revolutionized comics. These heroes, including The Fantastic Four, The Incredible Hulk, Spider-man, The X-men, Iron Man, Captain America and others, were not perfect heroes who lived in a perfect world, but fallible people with physical ailments and personal problems like our own. While the authors and artists who created them did not intend to write explicitly religious stories, their tales of imperfect heroes who try to do the right thing despite the many challenges they face provide us with the opportunity to reflect on our own faith journeys as we strive to live heroic lives in the real world. Each chapter reflects on the heroes’ most famous adventures and discusses the ways in which we are called to overcome many of the same types of obstacles they face as we strive to carry out the ministries to which God calls us. Each chapter ends with questions for reflection or group study.