Love in Action, Except Not

For those who wonder how they can respond when they see Michele Bachmann’s husband and other ex-gay activists spewing hatred, the documentary This is Love in Action demonstrates what can happen when even a small band of Christians finally stands up and speaks for those who have no voice.

The film chronicles the journey of Zach, a 16-year-old boy from Memphis, Tennessee, whose parents send him to an ex-gay camp for teens called Refuge. This program is part of Love in Action (LIA), a fundamentalist Christian program designed to rid sinners of their homosexual “addictions.”

Zach’s MySpace blog postings about his experiences in this ex-gay camp quickly went viral, and daily protests were organized outside the campus of LIA, followed by a barrage of international media coverage. These grassroots demonstrations countered the myth that one can “pray away the gay” and affirmed that it’s okay to be gay and a Christian. Also, Zach’s parents and some individuals involved in the ex-gay movement were interviewed to help shed light on why seemingly well-intentioned Christians would subject a minor to such an experience.

Currently this film is making the rounds of LGBTQ festivals and other theaters. If you can, catch this it at one of these upcoming dates.

September 8th, 7pm
Truth Wins Out Conference (Houston, TX)

September 10th, 4:15pm
Austin Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (Austin, TX)

September 17th, 11:00am
California Reel Pride Film Festival (New York, NY)

September 20th, 7:00pm
ReRun Theatre (New York, NY)—Free Screening

September 24th-26th
Palm Springs Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (Palm Springs, CA)

October 1st
Asheville Qfest (Asheville, NC)

October 2nd, 12:50pm
Atlanta’s Out on Film (Atlanta, GA)

October 10th, 6:30pm
Tampa Gay & Lesbian International Film Festival (Tampa, FL)

November 3rd-6th
Indie Memphis Film Festival (Memphis, TN)

November 3rd-12th
Reeling 2011: The 30th Chicago Lesbian & Gay International Film Festival (Chicago, IL)

Becky Garrison is a satirist/storyteller whose most recent book is Roger Williams’s Little Book of Virtues (Wipf & Stock, March 2020). Also, she edited Love, Always: Partners of Trans People on Intimacy, Challenge and Resilience (Transgress Press, 2015). Her six books include 2006’s Red and Blue God, Black and Blue Church (PW, starred review).