Film Addresses Being Catholic & LGBTQ

Father James Martin and director Shannon Post talk about their documentary “Building a Bridge” with Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks. The documentary named after the book by Father Martin “Building a Bridge” follows a priest on his mission to make the Catholic Church more accepting of our LGBTQ community despite loud opposition from both inside and outside the Church. The film tells the stories of people whose lives intersect in emotional and complicated ways with Father Martin’s journey as a voice for acceptance within the Church and the conflict between conservative and liberal Catholics over LGBTQ issues including Pope Francis. One of the highlights of the film is when Father Martin talks about how horrified he was by Catholic leaders’ silence in the wake of the Pulse Nightclub Massacre. He addresses this issue with a grieving Pulse mother Christine Leinonen whose son Dru was killed in the massacre. The film also follows Father Martin and the lives he has impacted including a family with three LGBTQ siblings and a college student trying to reconcile his gay and Catholic identities. Shannon co-directed and produced the film with Evan Mascagni a Catholic who was disenchanted by the Church but inspired by Father Martin’s message of building a bridge between the Church and our LGBTQ community that also resonated with Shannon as a queer person. The film came to the attention of Martin Scorsese who served as Executive Producer of “Building a Bridge” which premiered at the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival. We talked to Father James and Shannon about what they hope to accomplish with this film and their spin on our LGBTQ issues. 

Father James Martin is a Jesuit priest, editor at large of America magazine, consultor to the Vatican's Dicastery for Communication and the author of many books including the New York Times bestsellers “Jesus: A Pilgrimage”, “The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything” and “Learning to Pray”. A graduate of the Wharton School of Business Father Martin worked in corporate America before entering the Jesuits. Currently he recently launched Outreach a new website designed to help LGBTQ Catholics, their families and friends with respect, compassion and sensitivity. For More Info… Shannon Post is a queer documentary filmmaker and is currently producing a documentary feature supported by The Redford Center. She co-founded the film production company Player Piano Productions which creates social impact documentary films. "Building a Bridge" is now available on Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Vimeo and YouTube. The film will launch on AMC+ on June 21st and have its broadcast premiere on Sundance TV on June 26th.  

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