The Next Step in Dialogue - Is happening!
UPDATE 2:And the stretch goal was met too! You all really are incredible. We can't wait to share this dialogue with you all. Before the campaign ends, we just wanted to let you know that you can always keep up with us at http://www.fb.com/sgamovie or @sgamovie. Fully tax-deductible contributions can always be made through our fiscal sponsorship program with the San Francisco Film Society at http://www.sgamovie.com/donate. Much, much gratitude. Thanks for continuing to show up to be the change you want to see.
Update 1: Thanks to this phenomenal community, this companion dialogue film is happening! We just met our goal, with 18 days to go. And, a generous donor just announced a matching grant of 10% of whatever this Kickstarter campaign makes, up to $3k to help with stretch goals!
It's fantastic to think of stretch goals. We would love to be able to add subtitles and translations for more languages. We learned from our last campaign that good film translations take more time and money than we had thought! Subtitles will be $1500, and each language is $3,500 to $5,000 (depends on the language). We would start with Spanish and hope to expand from there.
Thanks for sharing!
Thank you all so much. Not only have you supported this companion dialogue film, but you've shared it with your friends and family members. Please know you can keep sharing because the stretch goals will just make this a better resource. Here's an in-depth Q&A with us about our goals and hopes:
More soon! For now--huge, huge thanks. We are incredibly blessed to work with this community that keeps being the change you want to see.
This is our second Kickstarter campaign. The first one to produce the DVD of the Seventh-Gay Adventists documentary was fully funded last fall after just three days! And now it's time to continue the outreach, education, and dialogue.
The impact of the Seventh-Gay Adventists documentary has been phenomenal, and that’s largely thanks to the incredible community that has come together to support, share, and connect around this film. The film screened to a warm reception at numerous film festivals across the U.S. Canada, Australia, Brazil and India, as well as at churches and community spaces. Our inbox is full of messages from people sharing about how these stories have had a positive effect in their families, churches, and communities. A movement is well underway to share authentic stories, step into listening, and love each other well, even when we have differences.
But many of you are asking, where do we go from here? How do we take the next step in love, listening, and respect in this intersection of faith and sexuality?
This Film Project
Our goal is to create a companion outreach film that models the dialogue we want to see. To do that, we’re going to bring together a diverse group of people (pastors, thought leaders, and LGBT Adventists) for a weekend of listening and dialoguing about the next steps. We’ll film their conversation and share it with you all as a resource.
We’ll ask them to share their own stories and journeys and address questions like, how do we treat each other well in faith communities when we don’t fully agree? How do we move forward with love and listening as a core value, especially when many of our families and communities of faith have different theological paradigms?
We already have really fantastic and respected voices lined up to participate. We’d ask them to engage in questions like, can churches be welcoming and safe—true spiritual communities even with theological differences? We would focus most on what everyone agrees on and yet also make sure that the diverse range of perspectives are shared.
And we’d love questions from all of you who help make this happen—what do you want to see a thoughtful group of Adventists engage in around this intersection of faith and sexuality? We'll send out a survey to all the backers of this project soliciting questions to include in the film.
The idea would be to model a “third way” that doesn’t demean, reject or denigrate anyone’s voice. It would be showing that genuinely sincere people read a few verses differently, but we can still seek goodness together. And it would try to model that dialogue.
From a stylistic standpoint, Stephen and I aren’t three-camera/TV set type filmmakers. The style of this companion film will be much like the Seventh-Gay Adventists documentary—authentic, intimate, and organic. We would want to model a real conversation where the people participating share their own stories in the process of this discussion.
After editing, this would be a 60-90 minute digital download that would be made available as a companion resource to the film.
We’ve already reached out to pastors, thought leaders, and LGBT Adventists whom we’d like to involve and who represent a range of diverse perspectives and personal stories, and the response has been very enthusiastic. As one respected thought leader responded, “The more I think about the chance to continue dialoguing, my answer is ‘Count me in.’”
We're excited to be able to work on a companion film to Seventh-Gay Adventists, but we'll need your help to make it happen. There are many up front expenses involved in this project because we are bringing people together from many places around the country.
Kickstarter is an all-or-nothing platform because projects like this need to make their goals in order to actually deliver the final film to supporters. The budget we’ve put together includes costs such as:
- Airfare and transportation
Weekend logistics and accommodations
- Production & post-production expenses (such as lighting, sound, crew, editing, and design and web elements)
- Outreach & distribution
Thank you for helping make this happen!
Who We Are
For those who don't know us, we are Daneen Akers and Stephen Eyer. We're a producing team focused on creating documentary films and community outreach that connect us and share stories that might not otherwise be seen. We also happen to be married to each other and the proud parents of a five-year-old daughter who has grown up with us working on this topic.
So why would a straight couple be so committed to sharing LGBT stories? (We like to think we're "Straight but not Narrow….) It's a long tale, but the highlights are that we go back five generations in the Adventists church on both sides. To us, this is our family. About eight years ago, we started attending a small, nontraditional, welcoming-to-all church in San Francisco where we simply got to really know and love LGBT Adventists, and we realized that our faith community had often completely mistreated people in the name of God. We witnessed some very disturbing events when Prop 8 really upped tensions in churches in CA, and, since we were expecting our daughter just a month after the elections, we had started asking ourselves what sort of world and faith community we wanted to raise her in. (To read more about how we came to make this film and our journey, see this page.)
We've always said that we wanted to start a conversation through the lens of real people and real stories. That's happened! And it's been a huge privilege to be part of this journey. And now we're ready to help model the ongoing dialogue we hope to see, a dialogue that's "with" people and not "about" people. A dialogue that builds bridges of understanding and fosters listening spaces of love and respect for all.
Our work has garnered the praise of many people we respect and admire, and our goals for this companion film will be the same.
"Seventh-Gay Adventists isn't just a helpful movie, important for the way it can help congregations of any denomination deal graciously and truthfully with the issue of homosexuality. It's also a beautifully-filmed and artfully-conceived movie. It does what the best art does - it 'humanizes the other.' You should see it, and when you do, you'll encourage others to see it as well." - Brian D. McLaren, author/speaker/blogger
"This is a beautiful and compelling film...Although it's set in the context of Seventh-day Adventism, anyone who has felt that their faith and sexuality are in conflict will instantly get this film." - Sharon Groves, director, religion and faith program, Human Rights Campaign
"This film is—hands down—the best bridge-building film in this genre that I’ve seen." - Andrew Marin, author of Love is an Orientation
"This is a really beautiful, gentle, compelling film that I found very hopeful." - Daniel Karslake, director of For the Bible Tells Me So
"It's rare to find a film that deals with this subject with this much nuance and sensitivity! We enjoyed showing it at our annual conference, and I'm happy to recommend it to others who want an insightful look into the human side of the gay debate in conservative churches." - Justin Lee, Executive Director, The Gay Christian Network
"The film is superb--a poignant and profound experience beyond any I've seen on the subject." - Chris Blake, author and professor of English, Union College
"The movie, which simply tells stories rather than taking an advocacy stance, is powerful. It can, I believe, do much to make Adventists more compassionate..." - Dr. William Johnsson, retired editor The Adventist Review
Your Support Is Needed to Make This Next Step Possible
This entire project has been possible because of the community that has come together to make it happen. You all have been the change you want to see, and it’s been a huge privilege being part of this. Thank you for believing in the Seventh-Gay Adventists film. Thank you for believing in us to share these stories and help nurture these listening spaces. And thanks for continuing to engage!
Please consider making a contribution to help make this companion dialogue film project a reality—and please share this with your friends and family along with a personal note about why you think this would be a valuable resource and contribution to your community. Thank you!
Risks and challenges
Independent film is always hard to create, but with the help of an incredibly supportive community, we've overcome every obstacle so far. We’ve already delivered a quality film before and we plan to do it again with this project. There will be challenges with scheduling, gathering the right crew, finding the right tone during the edit, and delivery all the perks that we’ve promised, but we’re confident we can deliver a high quality film in the end.
Of course, if there are any delays or setbacks we’ll let you know. We love the grassroots SGA film community that has made this project happen. You are all incredibly dear to us, and we’ll be sure to communicate with you through any challenges or obstacles that arise as we plan, create, and deliver this new companion film to you.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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