THE GENTLE BEAR MAN OF EMO

Content:

(CCC, BBB, M) Very strong Christian, Biblical worldview; no foul language; no violence; no sexual content; no nudity; no alcohol use; no smoking or drug use; and, discussion of growing up with an abusive father and mother.

Summary:

THE GENTLE BEAR MAN OF EMO tells the story of Michael and Betty Scheibler and the Isaiah 11 Wildlife Rescue and Rehab Sanctuary they started on their home property in Emo, Ontario as part of their own personal journey of healing. A strong Christian, Biblical worldview pervades this engaging, well-told story of redemption and caring for God’s creatures.

Review:

THE GENTLE BEAR MAN OF EMO tells the story of Michael and Betty Scheibler and the Isaiah 11 Wildlife Rescue and Rehab Sanctuary. They started the sanctuary on their home property in Emo, Ontario as part of their own personal journey of healing.

The documentary begins with Michael feeding a group of bears that have come to his sanctuary. He explains that Isaiah 11: 6, “The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and, a little child will lead them” was the vision and foundation for this sanctuary. He tells the story of how it all began and the variety of animals that have called the sanctuary home for years.

Interlaced throughout these stories is the personal story of Michael as he found his own personal healing while working closely with these animals. He had grown up with an abusive father and mother, who repeatedly told him God didn’t love him. He tried to run away from home at age five, attempted suicide at ages seven and nine, and considered killing his parents repeatedly. God was represented to him as a God of anger and wrath that thought little of him. As a result, Michael had wanted nothing to do with religion but desired a real and living relationship with God. It was in this sanctuary that Michael states, “God has been reintroducing His love for me through these animals.”

Michael’s personal journey is beautifully told alongside the daily workings of the sanctuary, the visitors who come to feed the bears, and the comical, often moving stories of animals Michael and Betty have helped. The power of redemption and connection to the past is a theme woven into the entire documentary.

In Brief:

THE GENTLE BEAR MAN OF EMO tells the story of Michael and Betty Scheibler of the Isaiah 11 Wildlife Rescue and Rehab Sanctuary. They started the sanctuary on their home property in Emo, Ontario as part of their own personal journey of healing. The documentary begins with Michael feeding a group of bears that have come to his sanctuary. He explains that Isaiah 11:6 about the wolf living with the lamb and a child leading them was the vision and foundation for this sanctuary. He tells the story of how it all began and the variety of animals that have called the sanctuary home for years. Interlaced throughout these stories is Mihcael’s own personal story as he found his healing from an abusive home through working with animals. Michael had grown up with an abusive father and mother, who repeatedly told him God didn’t love him.
A strong Christian and Biblical worldview pervades this engaging and well-told story of redemption. Some of the stories concerning an abusive mother and father could be disturbing for younger children.