As a young Christian, I was led to believe that sex held a magical power that would transform me into a man and heal all of my insecurities—even more so if I remained pure before marriage. Imagine my surprise after my wedding night when I realized, “I feel like the same person.”
Jesus, Don't Let Me Die Before I've Had Sex will be a feature-length documentary examining the teachings of the evangelical church on sex and exploring the undercurrent of idealism that leaves many lay members feeling frustrated and confused. The movie will paint a picture of what is taught explicitly and implicitly by showing how churchgoers react to those teachings⎯through anecdotes of first kisses, chastity rallies and secret obsessions. Along side these stories will be interviews of pastors reflecting on their own teachings, as well historians and sociologists diagramming the evolution of sexual teaching in the Church. Intercut throughout will be poignant stop-motion animation by the artist Brent Johnson of Yo Gabba Gabba, bringing to life the pain, joy, triumph and sorrow of our interviewees.
Jesus, Don't Let Me Die Before I've Had Sex aspires to start a new dialogue about sex within the Christian faith and isolate the philosophical underpinning which creates much of the cognitive dissonance experienced by church laity. Most documentaries on this topic are narrow in scope, usually limited to discussions on homosexuality or pedophilia in the priesthood. By examining the topic more broadly, the film will be able to present a more comprehensive picture of sexuality in the Christian church and hopefully illuminate many of the cultural struggles we face in America today.