PASADENA (CBS) — A Pasadena church calls it a story of redemption, and it plans a screening Saturday of the documentary “Journey Interrupted.”
But the people coming to see it won’t be the only ones who show up at the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
The film is about a group of people who were gay, and according to them, gave their lives to God and gave up on what they called their temptations.
Ryan Bell was once a pastor in the church. He says he left the ministry because the church isn’t tolerant of gay people and that “Journey Interrupted” is a perfect example of that.
“What that does is that it teaches people to be ashamed of their identity, ashamed of who they are as people,” Bell said.
Janelle Delgado says the movie is dangerous because it may push young people struggling with their identities toward suicide.
That’s why she’s organizing a protest for Saturday.
“They’re saying it’s not conversation therapy, but regardless they’re still asking people to repress who they are. And they’re essentially saying who you are isn’t OK,” Delgado said. “You have to change.”
Michael Carducci is featured in the film and says he lived as a gay man before giving himself over to God.
“We’re not here to tell somebody that they can’t be gay, and we’re certainly not here to say that God doesn’t love someone who is gay. We’re just here to give you another option,” he said.
The day was orderly and respectful. The Church offered food, drink, and bathrooms to the protesters. They also invited the protesters to come inside and listen or view the movie. At the end of the day, the church received a thank-you note from one of the protesters for being so kind.
In the words of one of the presenters, "Jesus would have us reach out with love for all. We are blessed!"