For almost 40 years Arthur Blessitt has walked around the world carrying a cross and sharing the love of Christ. Matt Crouch, CEO of Gener8Xion Entertainment, has known Blessitt for many years and realized last year that it was time to tell his story. The result is the documentary The Cross: The Arthur Blessitt Story, which opens March 27 in theaters nationwide.
With footage from years of traveling, including images of him and Billy Graham together in Ireland, the film chronicles Blessitt's journey around the world. The Mississippi-born evangelist has traveled to 315 countries and walked more than 38,000 miles. He began his ministry on Sunset Strip in Los Angeles and became known as the "Sunset Strip Minister." Because he loved the people he met on the Strip, he was reluctant to leave when he sensed God calling him to walk around the world carrying a wooden cross. But God reminded him that Sunset Strip stretches around the world.
Blessitt was ready to obey. Two weeks before he was to leave Los Angeles, however, doctors discovered he had a brain aneurysm. He explains in the film that circumstances don't change the call of God. Facing possible death, Blessitt decided he would rather die while in God's will than to live out of it. He left on schedule—Christmas Day 1969.
Moviegoers will be inspired by Blessitt's passion and commitment to not only answer God's call but also to persevere even in the midst of incredible danger. Blessitt says he learned along the way to see hardships and difficulties not as stumbling blocks but as stepping stones. "The safest place to be is in the will of God," he says onscreen.
Blessitt has traveled through 52 war zones, been beaten and also arrested 24 times. His first arrest was in Jackson, Miss., for holding a black man's hand while witnessing to him. Blessitt remained undeterred and has seen many miracles as God protected him, kept him alive and brought him through. Throughout his lengthy mission, he's had the opportunity to minister to countless people. That now includes millions more who, in watching The Cross, will undoubtedly be inspired by the lessons he's learned and the relationship he developed with the Lord-both conveyed powerfully onscreen in this 90-minute documentary. Ultimately, Blessitt says, it's all about loving God and people.
It was Crouch, as the movie's director and narrator, who best summed up this film: "It's not about the cross carrier; it's about what the cross did to the cross carrier."
To read more about The Cross: The Arthur Blessit Story, click here.
Arthur Blessitt's autobiography released earlier this year. Click here to purchase The Cross (Authentic Publishing).
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