One actress is hoping to defy stereotypes associated with Christianity in a new faith-based comedy series that she's asking fans to help raise money for.
Ann Mahoney, known for roles in "The Walking Dead" and "Sun Records," said God told her to create the sitcom while she was in church six years ago. Since then, Mahoney has been refining the script for "Preachin to the Choir," which centers around her playing a character named Sam Patchen who has just completed seminary and has her faith challenged regularly.
"She comes from a Christian family where everything has worked out for her, so she is coming from a place of unchallenged faith. Not to give too much away but Sam gets her first church assignment to replace a pastor at a church in New Orleans," Mahoney explained in a TVOvermind report. "She wants to change; she heads into that church like a bull in a china shop with her passion for faith and the church. But she quickly realizes that this church may not want to see any changes and that they have some really good ideas about faith that are more tested than hers.
"So the show is essentially Sam being challenged left and right about what she believes."
While Mahoney has already raised $150,000 for the sitcom, she set up an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign where fans and supporters can also donate to the creation of the faith-based sitcom. The self-proclaimed lover of Jesus who "curses a lot" explained why people should support her show on Indiegogo.
"Want to see Christians question their faith journey when the s*** hits the fan? This is your show," she wrote. "Want to watch a bunch of imperfect humans tangle with what it means to love your neighbor but not judge your neighbor, and maybe not overfeed your neighbor at the potluck? This is your show."
She went on to reveal that the show would tackle sexuality in the Christian world, including celibacy and homosexuality.
"Want to have sex talked about in a real way, and challenge why modern Christianity puts pressure just on girls to be pure? Want to discuss celibacy until couples are married?" she questioned. "We also deal with homosexuality on this show. And guess what? It isn't a sin."
One of Mahoney's goals for her show is to highlight elements of humor in faith.
"Faith doesn't always mean life will bring an easy journey; we need to talk about how funny church life is. I think humor is the element that is always missing in faith-based production," she said. "God is funny, and we need to show how funny we are as little humans trying to make our way through this life."