On Sept. 21, the Art and Culture Center/Hollywood was thrilled to present its award-winning documentary short film Open Dialogues: Stories From the LGBTQ Community in the sanctuary of the First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood.
The screening was followed by an inter-denominational talk moderated by Todd Delmay of the Hollywood LGBTQ+ Council, with First Presbyterian Pastor Kennedy McGowan and Rabbi Alan Tuffs of Temple Beth El of Hollywood. Audience members shared their thoughts and experiences following the wide-ranging discussion with Pastor McGowan and Rabbi Tuffs about the intersection between religious faith and human sexuality.
“The film Open Dialogues: Stories from the LGBTQ Community created space for Faith and Identity to meet,” Delmay wrote in a social-media post. “We shared teachings of the Talmud and the Bible, and the human yearning for a place to belong. It’s a conversation I have looked forward to for many years, and I'm grateful it is happening.”
Delmay, who once considered attending Christian seminary, recognized the Hollywood faith leaders for seeking to bridge the historic disconnect between religious institutions and non-binary individuals. Delmay noted, “Both brought such caring knowledge, and a willingness to be challenged and to challenge others to learn and grow.”
Open Dialogues was produced by the Center in 2020 and features seven Broward County residents who share their coming-out narratives in on-camera interviews. The 20-minute film directed by Freddy Rodriguez was awarded Best Broward Documentary at the virtual version of the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival in 2020.
The Center’s next public screening of Open Dialogues will be on Oct. 11 at ArtServe, 1350 E. Sunrise Blvd., in Fort Lauderdale. It will also be shown Oct. 23 at the Gateway Cinema as part of the OUTshine LGBTQ Film Festival, and Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival (Nov. 13 at the Gateway Cinema and Nov. 17 at Cinema Paradiso Hollywood). Open Dialogues is also an Official Selection of the Orlando Film Festival will be shown on a date to be determined (Oct. 29-31).
For more information about Open Dialogues, see www.artandculturecenter.org/open-dialogues-films.