Nathaniel’s story is also his mother’s story. It is a story about their relationship with each other, about Nat’s feelings about himself, about Chris’s feelings and a little about her church. The film invites us to reflect upon our own assumptions, prejudices and experiences about the issues raised.
Nat: Back then I was ashamed of who I was becoming.
Chris: Call it a mother’s intuition, I think I’ve known for a long time.
Chris: I knew he didn’t choose it.
Nat: It’s taken some time for mum to say it herself and come out with pride.
How do the joys and heartaches in this story resonate with you and connect to your experiences and knowledge of people you know?
being HIV positive
Chris: I was upset that you’d gone all those years without telling me.
Nat: It was the stigma, not the virus that led me to breaking point.
Nat: That was all it took, just like that, I fulfilled the destiny I was so ashamed I would.
Nat: With the right care HIV is even treatable, preventable and even untransmissable.
How have you come to understand issues such as those of shame and stigma, and the way that they have changed?
being a Christian
Nat: Not quite the good Christian boy any more.
Chris: I didn’t tell anyone at church, I regret that now.
Nat: Although I’m no longer a Christian, I still think ‘What would Jesus do?’
Chris: There’s a wide spectrum within Christianity of those…who call it an abomination and those who would accept him.
If you showed this film to a church community you know, what do you think would be the reactions and why?
One Body, One Faith, previously the Gay Christian Movement, then LGCM, is one of the main Christian ecumenical organisations which holds the conviction that human sexuality, sexual orientation and gender identity are gifts of God gladly to be accepted, enjoyed and honoured as a way of both expressing and growing in love, in accordance with the life and teaching of Jesus Christ.
Open Table is a network of ecumenical Christian worship communities which offer a warm welcome to people who are: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer /Questioning, Intersex, Asexual (LGBTQIA).
Most Christian denominations have produced reports and held discussions about sexuality and gender issues and such reports can be found on the websites of those denominations: The Methodist Church has produced a report ‘God in Love Unites Us’ (2019) on marriage and relationships, including sexuality and same sex relationships. The Church of England will publish its latest thinking ‘Living in Faith and Love’ sometime in 2020.
‘Who cares About HIV?’ Stephen Penrose and others, published by SPCK, 2019
‘The Oxford Handbook of Theology, Sexuality and Gender’, Adrian Thatcher, published by OUP, 2017
‘Just Love: A journey of self-acceptance’, Jayne Ozanne, published by DLT, 2018
‘Sexuality in the New Testament’, William Loader, published by SPCK, 2010
‘119: My Life as a Bisexual Christian’ Jaime Sommers, Published by DLT, 2016