Praying with Lior

May 15, 2008 at 4:41 pm Leave a comment

Sounds like an excellent film.

The highly acclaimed independent film, Praying With Lior, will have its first screening in Queens, with director Ilana Trachtman, on Sunday, May 18, at 1:00 p.m., at the Central Queens YM & YWHA in Forest Hills. Told with humor and joy, this film, shown at Jewish film festivals around the country, is the story of Lior, a boy with Down syndrome, who has spent his entire life praying with utter abandon. Is he a “spiritual genius,” the film asks, or simply the vessel that contains everyone’s unfulfilled wishes and expectations?

While everyone agrees Lior is closer to God, he’s also a burden, a best friend, an inspiration, and an embarrassment, depending on which family member is speaking. As Lior approaches Bar Mitzvah, the Jewish coming-of-age ceremony, people in his family and community provide a window into life with a person with a disability. The film, ultimately, questions our discomfort with people with disabilities. “Each person,” the director says, “and each community, deserve the opportunity to spiritually connect, grow, and shine to the highest rung of their potential. We believe that this is most possible when our communities are truly whole, that is, open to everyone.”

Director Ilana Trachtman, who will speak following the screening, is an Emmy award-winning documentary and children’s television producer. She has produced and directed programs for PBS, HBO, Channel 13, and other television stations.

Central Queens YM & YWHA 67-09 108 Street in Forest Hills. A donation of $5 is requested. For more information, call 718-268-5011, ext. 151, or email pkurtz@cqyjcc.org. Interviews & photo available.

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Entry filed under: Forest Hills.

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