he organizes video game sessions in the presbytery

If you run into Father Bertrand Monnier on the street, chances are he’s wearing a metallic T-shirt and a Roman collar. The 43-year-old religious man, pastor in Verdun (Meuse) since 2017, started listening to heavy metal in college and playing video games regularly when he was 18. The priest even published a book on one of these topics, The Ten Commandments of Video Games Salvator editions, specialized in religious and spiritual works.

Knowing that he does not really fit the traditional image of a priest, Bertrand Monnier assumed. “Here, everyone knows my passion. La Meuse is a rural diocese where almost everyone knows each other. I was born in Bar-le-Duc and grew up here. » At video game conventions, he really doesn’t go unnoticed with such a striking appearance. “For those who don’t know me, I’m into Cosplayhe laughed. My Roman collar is not part of a disguise. This is how I dress every day. I got negative comments… but positive too! »

Be interested in others without judgment

As in life, he calls in his book for more openness and less criticism. “Ignorance leads to these behaviors. » That’s why it encourages parents, grandparents and educators to take an interest in video games that young people enjoy. “Some, who know nothing about it, put themselves as judges. They know which games are good or not. These are just stereotypes”he laments, pointing to a generational conflict.

The book, saw it France 3 Great East , also allows relatives to identify alarming signs: is my child suffering from addiction or is he just emotional? Another line of thought: the selection of video games should be made according to the player. “Like in literature, there are books for everyone. »

Presbytery game sessions

A real gamer, he organizes discussion hours on this topic where the youngest and the oldest try to exchange. The country priest even managed to bring video games to the presbytery by installing some computers there. One Sunday a month, he organizes sessions to warm up the keyboard or the joysticks. “I even have a virtual reality headset for those who want to try! » The opportunity to invite parents and grandparents, far from this universe, to take an interest in it. “Some are willing to try and others resist. I think video games are a new art form. It’s a modern culture.”he argued.

Responsible for 28 bell towers and youth ministry, he takes time to play alone to catch his breath between funerals, weddings, meetings and his training. “I need to ventilate my neuronshe told us. I especially like management and strategy games Thunder stone, StarCraft II where Woodcraft III . » He even participated in tournaments, always wearing his Roman collar and a metallic T-shirt.

Soon a book on tattoos?

Outside of his duties, the forty-year-old enjoys writing. “It allows me to clarify my thoughtshe told us. I also write articles, editorials for magazines. I always like this exercise. My dissertation, in the master’s degree in theology at the faculty of Metz, is devoted to the writer JRR Tolkien [auteur du roman Le Seigneur des anneaux]. »

Father Bertrand Monnier is not done with the surprise because he is currently preparing a book on… tattoos. “I don’t have anyhe assured. But this is a topic that I bring up in the youth ministry and 80% of them have it. » There is no scheduled release date yet. The priest intends to propose this letter to the Salvator publishing house, which is more adept at publishing biblical texts.

The Ten Commandments of Video Games (edited by Salvator), Bertrand Monnier, €15.

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