Tonight was the UK Premiere of "For the Bible Tells Me So" ... part of the London Literature Festival in the Queen Elizabeth Hall at the Southbank Centre. It was billed in the program as "the provocative documentary about the chasm that separates gay life and Christianity today" and the film was to be followed by a conversation between Bishop Gene Robinson and Sir Ian McKellen.
There had been some conversation "across the pond" about whether or not it would "play" in London ... these very personal stories of American families coming to terms with reconciling their faith and their love for their children.
It played to a nearly-full-house-audience of over 800.
It played to a standing ovation for the Bishop of New Hampshire when he took the stage to have his post-film conversation with Sir Ian McKellen.
It played to those questioners from the audience (and not a heckler in sight, let it be noted) who talked with great sincerity about their alienation from the Church-as-they-know-it because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. (And what does it say that after yesterday's failed efforts by the heckler in Putney to shout down +Gene's sermon he was willing to take the risk of an "open mike" Q&A with 800+ folks in a London theater?)
It played so well that on-the-record-as-an-"unbeliever" Ian McKellen said it was enough to make him "consider Christianity."
Pictures coming tomorrow ... for now, however, the "early reviews" are in ... and it's TOTALLY a hit!
And tomorrow we're on to Canterbury!