The First Universalist Church will screen two recent documentary films that shed light on the clash between conservative Christians and gay and lesbian Americans. Each film will be followed by a brief discussion.

The series will open Friday, Oct. 8 with “8: The Mormon Proposition” at 6:30 p.m. at the church, 345 Broadway. Reed Cowan’s 2010 documentary explores the Mormon Church’s involvement in the promotion and passage of Proposition 8 in California, its funding of the National Organization for Marriage and its secretive decades-long campaign against equality for gays and lesbians.

“For The Bible Tells Me So,” an award-winning 2007 film by Daniel Karslake, will be screened Friday, Oct. 22, also at 6:30 p.m. The documentary reconciles homosexuality and Biblical scripture and posits that religious anti-gay bias is based almost solely upon a misinterpretation of the Bible.  Through the experiences of five very normal, Christian families — including those of former House Majority Leader Richard Gebhardt and Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson — viewers discover how people of faith handle the realization that they have a gay child or family member.

In 1995, the First Universalist Church of Rockland was certified by the Unitarian Universalist Association as a Welcoming Congregation, a congregation that actively works for the inclusion of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in all aspects of society. There is no charge for the film programs. For more information, call the church office at 594-8750.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to dernest@villagesoup.com.