By Amber Richardson
producer for Women of Faith
Hannah very graciously invited me to post today by way of spreading the word about a 30-minute film I’ve been working on called Women of Faith. The film attempts to explore some of the unique challenges of being a believing Mormon woman through dramatizing the stories of five women from the Church’s history. It can be viewed for free at www.iamawomanoffaith.org
You can watch the trailer for the film below:
If you visit the ‘About’ page on the website, you’ll find a long and detailed account of how the project came into being. It follows the major highlights of creating a stage play and then adapting that play into a film— finding the stories, writing the play, crowd-funding the film, and reaching other milestones.
But as I’ve reflected on what came first, what really came first, I’ve been reminded that it was questions.
The stage play (from which the screenplay was adapted) was something that was co-written by nine female BYU theatre students, and while I cannot speak for the entire group, I know after our weeks of working together that I can safely represent them in this assertion: we definitely had questions.
And so this project, Women of Faith, was a tremendous blessing to us all, because it helped us find begin to discover the answers we were seeking. Now, if you go and watch Women of Faith, you’ll probably find that none of those answers are proffered to the viewer. That’s true. Because who’d want that anyways? If you look hard enough though, what you might find within the film is our journey.
The way that we came to our answers was through studying the lives of the women that have gone before us, our foremothers. President Spencer W. Kimball is quoted in Daughters in My Kingdom as having said, “We know that women who have a deep appreciation for the past will be concerned about shaping a righteous future.”
Now, while I doubt that he was talking about women’s history specifically, that addition to the quotation seems to be implied in the mission of Daughters in My Kingdom.
“We know that women who have a deep appreciation for the past [of women] will be concerned about shaping a righteous future.”
What I have discovered as I have worked more closely with the past of my foremothers would be difficult to innumerate in a blog post. But primarily, I have discovered that each and every woman is different. That each has a different mission, and that each is called to build the kingdom of God in different ways.
Perhaps this is why President Julie B. Beck often stressed the importance of learning the language of personal revelation. It is only through that channel that we can find our individual path.
That’s what Women of Faith has taught me anyways.
I am grateful that I am a creature of questions. But I am also grateful for the voices in my life of temperance. Both types of people made up the creative team behind Women of Faith. And we discovered that we needed both. That a kind of harmony was found between us when we really listened to each other, when we took cues from each other’s strengths.
Why can’t those of us who are inclined to question and those of us who are not see our commonalities, our shared goals?
Are we not all disciples? Are we not all striving to do some little good in the world?
As I’ve worked on Women of Faith I’ve seen that another thing we have in common is our history. The strong women who came before, who paved the way for us, they belong to us all. And as we use our voices to finally give them theirs’, perhaps we can continue to move towards becoming a better Zion.
It is our hope that perhaps Women of Faith can help us move down that path. That it can motivate our viewers, regardless of their gender, to seek a better understanding of faith, womanhood, and unity.
We’re on Facebook! Check out www.facebook.com/WomenOfFaithFilm to view production photos and to engage with the film’s fans and cast. If you’re looking for more information about the women highlighted in the film, the creators behind the project, or to view the film (which I really hope you do) please visit www.iamawomanoffaith.org.