Change happens most powerfully person to person – loved one to loved one. Many American Christians need help in order to stand with LGBT friends and families without leaving their faith behind. The Friends & Family Plan gives LGBT people and allies the support and expert data we need to help our conflicted Christian loved ones – as Christians – support LGBT equality.

The Friends & Family Plan will help you to discuss issues of love, sexuality, and gender in Christian terms with your conflicted loved one. The Plan draws on Bible passages, insights to sway skeptical literalists, and gentle conversation strategies to ease the tension that may build during conversation. We work with a network of respected national partner organizations that you can learn more about through our Resources page.

Love free or die

The inspiration for The Friends & Family Plan is the 2012 Sundance Award-winning documentary LOVE FREE OR DIE, which looks at church and state, love and marriage, faith and identity — and one man’s struggle to dispel the notion that God’s love has limits.

Directed by Macky Alston and produced by Sandra Itkoff, LOVE FREE OR DIE follows Gene Robinson, the first openly gay person to be elected bishop in the high church traditions of Christianity. His 2003 elevation in the Episcopal diocese of New Hampshire, ignited a worldwide firestorm in the Anglican Communion that has threatened schism. Even as he has pushed for greater inclusion within his own church, Bishop Robinson has become a standard bearer in the fight over the rights of LGBT people to receive full acceptance in church and state. The film will have its national television premiere on PBS’ Independent Lens on Monday, October 29, 2012 at 10 PM on PBS (check local listings).

Alston’s camera follows Bishop Robinson as he steps onto the world stage, traveling from small-town churches to the Lincoln Memorial, where he delivers the invocation at Barack Obama’s inauguration; from London, where he is scorned and relegated to the fringes of a once-in-a-decade convocation of bishops to which he is deliberately not invited, to a decisive meeting in California of the Episcopal Church where Robinson plays an instrumental role in establishing the full inclusion of LGBT people. Through it all, Robinson steadfastly calls for everyone to stand for equality – inspiring bishops, priests and ordinary folk to come out from the shadows and change history.

To learn more about the film, visit the LOVE FREE OR DIE official Web site or PBS’ interactive companion Web site which features detailed information on the film, including an interview with the filmmaker and links and resources pertaining to the film’s subject matter. The site also features a Talkback section for viewers to share their ideas and opinions, preview clips of the film, and more.

We have faith LGBT People of Faith Speak Out

The vast majority of the images on this site are selections from We Have Faith: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Clergy and People of Faith Speak Out, the latest touring photo-text exhibit created by Family Diversity Projects. This exhibit includes interviews by Peggy Gillespie of leading LGBT clergy, allied clergy, and people of faith, and photos by Gigi Kaeser – the same team that created the award-winning travelling exhibit Love Makes A Family: Portraits of LGBT People and their Families. We Have Faith is an exceptional and inspiring resource that can help open minds and hearts.

We Have Faith features renowned clergy and people of many faiths and denominations including United Church of Christ, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, Episcopalian, Catholic, Jewish, Congregational, Pentecostal, Muslim, Mormon, Unitarian Universalist, Reformed Church of America, MCC, Baptist, and Buddhist.

You can bring We Have Faith to your community. Contact us to learn how.

Meet the team

Macky Alston
Macky Alston is Director of Auburn Media at Auburn Seminary, where he equips faith leaders to stand for justice through the media. An award-winning documentary filmmaker, his work includes Love Free or Die, premiered Sundance and broadcast on PBS in 2012, as well as the Hard Road Home, Family Name, The Killer Within and Questioning Faith. A graduate of Union Theological Seminary, he comes from a long line of ministers in the American South and grew up exposed to the power of the media and the pulpit, as charismatic leaders on the Left and Right shaped society and politics for generations to come.
Sandra Itkoff
Sandra Itkoff is a producer of award-winning documentaries and children’s programming (Love Free or Die, premiered Sundance, broadcast PBS Oct 2012, Off and Running – PBS ’10, Defamation – Sundance Channel ’09, The Killer Within – Discovery ’06, Cadillac Desert, winner of a DuPont Columbia Journalism Award, PBS ’97). For over 20 years her films have been exploring struggles of faith, morality and obligation and have screened at Lincoln Center, the Royal Theater in London, the Sundance Film Festival and church basements.
Christopher White
Christopher White has been a documentary film editor since 1995. White has edited numerous award-winning films, five in collaboration with director Macky Alston, including Love Free or Die, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, winning the Special Jury Prize. Other films with Alston include The Killer Within (as editor and co-director) which premiered at the 2006 Toronto Film Festival and was nominated for a 2008 Best Documentary Emmy, and Hard Road Home, a cinéma vérité look at life after prison, nominated for a Best Documentary Emmy in 2009. White is a partner in Reveal Productions with Producer Sandy Itkoff and Director Macky Alston.
Jake Goodman
Jake Goodman is the Director of Groundswell of Courage, Auburn Seminary’s LGBT campaign. He is a founding member of Queer Rising, a grassroots group which demands full equality for all queer people through nonviolent direct action and civil disobedience. Jake has taught, spoken and served as scholar-in-residence atseminaries, synagogues, churches, JCC's, and camps across the US and Israel. He is the pre-school storyteller at the 14th Street Y, and a company member of Storahtelling, previously serving as Associate Director. Boards: Guiding Proud and the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club (Treasurer). Education: MA, Experiential Jewish Education, the Davidson School at the Jewish Theological Seminary; BFA, Acting, Emerson College.
Michelle Reyf
Michelle Reyf is Director of Digital Media at Auburn Seminary where she leads on digital engagement strategy and implementation for Auburn and its social action initiative Groundswell. She came to Auburn from the New Media team at J Street, the progressive Jewish lobby and grassroots organization for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Michelle is an alumni of the New Organizing Institute's New Media Bootcamp and a graduate of Dartmouth College. She practices yoga and compassion.
Bishop Gene Robinson
V. Gene Robinson was elected bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire on June 7, 2003 and was invested as the Ninth Bishop of New Hampshire on March 7, 2004. Bishop Robinson has been particularly active in the area of full civil rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. He has been honored by many LGBT organizations for this work, including the Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, GLAAD, and the Equality Forum. Bishop Robinson was invited by Barack Obama to give the invocation at the opening inaugural ceremonies at the Lincoln Memorial on January 18, 2009. His new book, God Believes in Love: Straight Talk About Gay Marriage, was published by Alfred Knopf in September 2012. Retiring from the Diocese of New Hampshire at the end of 2012, Robinson will continue to serve as a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress.