The pastors took their seats at the table next to HIV-positive advocates last Monday as light streamed in through the multicolored stained glass windows at the Trinity United Church of Christ.
It was time to talk about God and AIDS.
The panel discussion at the South Side church, facilitated by The Balm in Gilead and sponsored by the AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC), was a precursor to the National Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS, March 4-10. Similar panels will take place in Washington and Atlanta. The idea is to bring together leaders of faith traditions and people with HIV to have a frank discussion on how churches can do more to stop AIDS in the African-American community, where the disease has made deadly gains in recent years.
“We don’t want to make the same mistakes of the last 30 years,” said Pernessa Seele, founder/CEO of The Balm in Gilead. “We have to talk to each other, face to face, and ask ‘how do we want to work together to end this epidemic?’ ”
Courtesy of our friends at the Court Theatre, here's a video of Tony Kushner reflecting on his play Angels in America, with the artistic director Charlie Newell, at the first rehearsal for the spring production.
Tony Kushner will be the guest of honor at the AIDS Foundation of Chicago's 2012 fundraising dinner, An Angel Among Us: A Evening with Pulitzer Prize-winning Playwright Tony Kushner, on March 27. Tickets can be purchased online or by calling Rhett Lindsay, AFC’s manager of fundraiser events, at (312) 334-0935.
The Court Theatre’s preview performances of Angels in America begins March 30. Proceeds from the April 14 opening night performance go to AFC.
When I was 18, I did an art project against my will.
As a theatre major at Loyola University Chicago, I was required to take Introduction to Theatrical Design. Early in the semester, we had to create a conceptual project based on a favorite play. No rules. Just do it.
After 13 years of Catholic school, where structure was the air we breathed, I was at a loss. I couldn’t even draw a straight line.
The previous semester, I had been assigned Tony Kushner’s Angels in America. From the moment I sat down to read the play, on a bench facing Lake Michigan on a mild November day, I’d fallen in love with it. But even though I’d written a paper about the play, I still couldn’t express exactly why I loved it.
Do you ever feel there are critical advances in HIV/AIDS prevention that aren't being properly covered in the mainstream media? Or that there are complex HIV/AIDS-related healthcare and funding issues not being clearly explained? Or that there are powerful HIV/AIDS stories here in Chicago just waiting for someone to tell them? We feel that way, too!
At the AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC), we’re committed to changing the story of HIV/AIDS. Inside Story aims to take you inside that story, to give you an intimate look at how AFC, and other Chicago and national organizations, are fighting HIV/AIDS through medical, housing and support services; cutting-edge research into prevention and treatment methods; and advocacy for stronger HIV-AIDS public policy from legislators.