Filmmaker Roger Ross Williams has screened his documentary, God Loves Uganda, at film festivals and events over the past year and seen the reactions to the reality of American fundamentalist Christians' export of homophobia to Africa. Having spurred debates and dialogues both in the States and in Africa, the film is currently playing in New York and Los Angeles, reaching a general audience. Soon, it will open in more cities, in addition to being screened at churches, colleges, nonprofit groups, and film festivals around the world, in an effort to educate and show that gay men and women aren't the monsters they have built up in their minds.
The openly gay director--who explained after the film premiered at Sundance how he was outed and religious people tried to 'pray the gay away--also wanted to show how missionaries working in Uganda are using the African nation as a test case in their effort to establish a particular strain of Christianity that they have given up on the U.S. and Europe. "Every single American evangelical I talked to says they feel that they've lost the culture war in America," Williams said in a recent interview, adding that they see Africa as "the new center of Christianity."
Although it could be easy to paint with a broad brush and implicate all people of Christian faith, the film also spotlights religious leaders who have stood against homophobia, such as Christopher Senyonjo, the former Anglican bishop of Uganda. Williams calls them the heroes of the story, calling Senyonjo "a saint. He's just the most loving man," Williams said. "He believes that God is love, and he preaches love and acceptance for everyone."