Alexandra Pelosi is the talented filmmaker behind “The Trials of Ted Haggard”–though, as she put it in the New York Times yesterday, she prefers to be considered a maker of television, not documentaries. Fair enough, as her light, earthy, humanizing touch is just right for the small screen.
making a documentary about evangelicals when Ted Haggard was at the height of
his power, and he was part of that movie. You must have been editing footage of
him at about
the time his life fell apart. What was that experience like for you????
back into the edit room to update the movie about what happened to Ted. When I
found out that Ted was living a double life, I felt very personally deceived by
heard on the news that Ted lived in her neighborhood. So my husband pulled out
his cell phone and called him. Ted picked up the phone and invited us over for
lunch. We went and spent 9 hours talking over what happened (I did not film any
of this). Then, over time when we visited Arizona we stopped in to see how he
was doing and I filmed little moments because it was so interesting how
different his life was after he was exposed. After he moved back to Colorado
Springs, we started editing together the story of what it was like for him in
hell. Do you agree? Did you speak with anyone at New Life about their version
of these events???
not spoken with anyone from the Board–they never returned my calls. I let
them speak in the movie by using footage from CNN. I didn’t think it was fair
to make Brady Boyd speak on the subject since he came to the church after the
scandal was over. ??
would you describe the trials of the Haggard children????
for Ted–he deserved to be punished for deceiving the people who trusted him–but I do feel sorry for Gayle and the children. They have suffered the most
through all of this. Still, they forgive Ted, and if you ask them why they will
tell you that the Bible says ‘you must forgive.’ ????
study of evangelicals in “Friends of God,” and you’ve captured an
archetypal story of religious downfall with “The Trials of Ted
Haggard.” What do you think, and how do you feel, about evangelical
Christianity now? And what about Christianity apart from the evangelical
church-goers and the ‘holier than thou’, sharp-tongued Church leaders.?I have a
great respect for the all the individuals I met at all of the churches I
visited. I made many friends at New Life who I stay in touch with today, but I
am suspicious of the politically active evangelical leaders who have been very
judgmental of the rest of us ‘ungodly’ types. The reason why so many people are
suspicious of the church is because they built their institutions by preaching
forgiveness. They did not always practice what they preach.
a “deceiver and a liar,” but his bigger sin was he brought bad
publicity to the church, so they paid him to disappear? A young man alleges
inappropriate relations with Ted and they paid him to keep his mouth shut? It
all sounds a little shady.
Ted’s fall is because it confirms all of their suspicions about what happens
behind closed doors at churches. As Ted says in the movie, churches are a
business, and he was bad for business so they made him disappear.
the years, while making these films, I got on all of the mailing lists of the
different church ministries. Needless to says, the fundraising calls I get
from these groups are very un-Christian. Last night, my two year old (who was
baptized in the Catholic church) answered the phone, and it was a man from some
church group asking for money to “Stop Obama and the baby killers in
Congress from butchering babies.” My son repeated, “Church mama,
Obama baby killa.” God is bigger than that!