Start the Conversation

Start the Conversation is a youth-made film examining the challenges and opportunities lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning (LGBTQQ) youth in Marin County face when connecting to a faith community.

Our team has discussed this topic and gathered voices from different faith leaders and youth who have a strong connection to this topic. We hope that this film will be meaningful to LGBTQQ youth, adult faith leaders, and to any person who is interested in these topics.

The intersection of religion and spirituality with gender identity and sexual orientation is complex and sometimes contentious. Our goal is not to have answers to these complex issues, but simply to start a conversation and foster acceptance.

This film was informed by dialogues with adult faith leaders and youth from the following communities:

  • Protestant Christian
  • Conservative Judaism
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • Evangelical Christian
  • Reform Judaism
  • Roman Catholic
  • Vedantic Hindu
  • Sufi Islam
  • Agnostic
  • Buddhist

Most of the dialogue participants requested to remain anonymous.

Continue the Conversation
Youth Leadership Institute
Spectrum LGBT Center
Marin Interfaith Council
Family Diversity Project
Believe Out Loud

Discussion Questions

In the end of the film, Father Bob Haberman challenged youth, as the next generation of leaders, to start the conversation about human sexuality within spiritual communities. What makes youth better equipped to do this work and what can we learn from past generations?

Sexual orientation is a complicated topic and it has many opposing viewpoints. In the film, a key theme was inclusiveness towards LGBTQQ youth. Why do you think the film makers chose inclusiveness despite opposing attitudes toward this issue?

What opportunities exist for spiritual communities today to be inclusive, open and accepting of LGBTQQ youth?

What are the ways in which spiritual leaders/youth ministers could become more comfortable and better prepared to talk with young people about sexuality and gender?

Many of the respondents and dialogue participants requested to remain anonymous, why do you think that is?

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