Troy Perry didn't set out to fight the establishment; he set out to tend to the spiritual needs of his community — the homosexual community. What began 41 years ago in his Southern California living room as a gathering of twelve people — a blended congregation of gay and straight people who were searching for God — has grown into the Metropolitan Community Church, a worldwide assembly of 300 churches and 43,000 members. But during the past 41 years, Reverend Perry discovered that in order to serve his community well, he would have to fight. He fought first for recognition as a legitimate Christian minister, he fought for the growth of his church and he fought for the rights of his congregation by filing a lawsuit petitioning the government to recognize same-sex marriage — in 1970. Recognized by the ACLU and the Human Rights Campaign for his tireless service to civil activism, Perry is remarkably anonymous to much of the country. Scott Bloom rectifies that oversight with his documentary Call Me Troy
, a first-person account of Perry's spiritual and civic journey. The Webster University Film Series screens Call Me Troy
at 7 p.m. tonight in Moore Auditorium (470 East Lockwood Avenue; 314-968-7487 or www.webster.edu/filmseries
). Rev. Perry will attend the screening and take questions from the audience afterward. Admission is $5 to $6.
Fri., Feb. 20, 2009