We who blog under Dialogue’s tent are in a somewhat awkward position. On the one hand, we blog to share our passion for Dialogue The Journal and under its umbrella and, on the other, we quite necessarily share our own opinions. We’ve all come to care about you and your opinions and enjoy our conversations with you in the same way you care about and enjoy each other. We personally like being a small part of your community. But Dialogue the institution’s mission is to further dialogue, not to take sides in any cause but our own. Dialogue is governed by one belief: that dialogue is good because we are most likely to learn the truth in a free and open exchange of ideas.
Today I speak for myself, not for Dialogue, even more than usual because I want to ask you to join me in supporting a cause. I know I risk exploiting my invitation to blog with you and pray you will not be offended. I know I would want you to tell me about this opportunity in any way possible; I hope you will feel the same.
Many of you became aware in 2003 that Richard Dutcher and Margaret Young were raising funds to produce a documentary then called Eleventh Hour: Blacks and the LDS Church. Darius Gray has also been involved since the beginning. I recently became aware the research is finished. All that remains is the editing, scoring and physical production. The project could be finished by summer’s end. If so, it could be released before the PBS documentary on the church airs around Christmas and benefit from the PBS publicity. Renamed, Nobody Knows: The Untold Story of Black Mormons needs $50,000 for completion. It is a lot and it isn’t. It can be done with a few large and many small donations.
Likely you too were heartened by President Hinckley’s statement against racism during the Priesthood session of April conference. One of the ways we can end racism and encourage our black brothers and sisters is to tell the stories of black members from the earliest days of the church to the present. I have seen some of the raw footage collected for the video. It both wounded and inspired me. I was in tears, yet I was hopeful. Just this teaser trailer convinced me Nobody Knows will be the same high quality we now expect from Richard and Margaret. It will change hearts and minds. And it contains stunning material none of us has seen before.
Please consider making a tax-deductible donation. Because a contribution from must accompany each donation, you will need to let me know where I can mail or fax you the form.
UPDATE: the donation form is available for download here.