Filmmaker Brendan Fay

Brendan Fay is the filmmaker behind the great documentary that was presented at The Sanctuary, “Taking a Chance on God.” The film follows the extraordinary life of 87-year-old John McNeill, from Buffalo, NY, and his boyhood through his experiences as a POW in Nazi Germany, his LeMoyne College years as Jesuit professor and Vietnam peace promoter, leading gay rights advocate, and loving partner of 47 years to Charles Chiarelli. McNeill, author, founder of the LGBT Catholic group Dignity/New York, and a gay community leader during the AIDS crisis of the 1980s, refused to be silenced by the Vatican on LGBT issues. This resulted in his expulsion from the Jesuit priesthood.

Fay is a regular presenter on spirituality and justice at colleges, conferences, and retreats and had been part of many panels and theology forums. His speaks of all different themes ranging within LGBT activism within the Catholic community, the global movement for marriage equality, and Irish LGBT history and immigration in a time of AIDS. Fay is often invited to speak on his friendship with Fr. Mychal Judge OFM who died in the tragedy of 9/11. His presentations have included the history of Irish religious women such as Civil War to Civil Rights: Sisters of Compassion and the Nun of Kenmare, Faith as Help of Hindrance for the LGBT Community, and Marriage Equality: A Grassroots and Global Rights Movement. Brendan Fay is the Director, Writer, and Producer of the film “Taking a Chance on God.” Brendan holds a BA in Theology and Sociology from St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth, Ireland and a MA in Theology from St. John’s University in New York.

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