The Utah Film Center and the Grand County Public Library present “Sacred”

The film “Sacred” might be the perfect movie to show on Winter Solstice, a time of spiritual significance for many.

Shot by more than 40 filmmaking teams from around the world, the film explores how faith and spiritual practice are a part of the human experience and how people turn to rituals and prayer to help get through life’s crises, and deal with major life events.

The Grand County Public Library and the Utah Film Center will be showing a free screening of “Sacred” on Thursday, Dec. 21, at 7 p.m. at Star Hall, 159 E. Center St.

“We loved the idea of screening ‘Sacred’ in Moab because the film gets to the personal, ritual elements that make religion and spirituality so universal,” Utah Film Center Film Program Coordinator David Eyer Davis said. “The film is a visual journey into the stories of believers all around the globe in a way that transcends a specific belief system.”

“Moab is a great example of a spiritually diverse community where many people come together and celebrate life,” he added. “This film, with its 40 different filmmakers shooting in so many cultural settings, is a worldwide echo of that diversity and togetherness.”

The movie is unique in that it does not have a single plot, but rather tells the story cumulatively, by “finding parallels and contrasts in the celebrations and struggles of many different people,” Davis said.

“Sacred” was an official selection at the 2016 DOC NYC, America’s largest documentary festival; the 2016 Tokyo International Film Festival; and the 2016 International Documentary Festival Amsterdam.

The film’s honors include the Gabriel Award for Best Documentary 2017, RiverRun Film Fest Special Jury Prize 2017, and Best Picture Award at the Festival Internacional de Cine Religiosa de la Argentina in Buenos Aires.

Director Thomas Lennon commissioned or sourced footage from top independent filmmakers from more than 25 countries, with a wide range of religious traditions – each country contributing a single scene. The film is presented in multiple languages with English subtitles.

Davis recommended the film, Grand County Library Assistant Jessie Magleby said.

“We agreed this beautiful film would be an excellent selection for the holiday season,” Magleby said. “The movie presents a vibrant, kaleidoscopic view of sacred practices from all over the world … We hope our patrons will find it unifying and encouraging, as it illuminates the basic human desire, in all its color and diversity, to connect with the divine.”

In its Sunday Arts and Leisure section, The New York Times said the film is “a reminder that for millions of people of faith all over the world, religion is about small but significant moments of hope, affirmation, and reflection.”

“It’s a great film for the holidays – warm, far-reaching and real,” Davis added. “It asks the question: what is so human about faith?”

Library, film center host free Dec. 21 screening of acclaimed documentary at Star Hall

“We hope our patrons will find it unifying and encouraging, as it illuminates the basic human desire, in all its color and diversity, to connect with the divine.”

When: Thursday, Dec. 21, at 7 p.m.

Where: Star Hall, 159 E. Center St.

Cost: Free

Information:; 435-259-1111