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‘Hope for Hurting Hearts’ Film’s First Public Release

By Dan Wooding, Founder of ASSIST Ministries, July 8, 2013

RIVERSIDE, CA (ANS) – A special pre-release screening of a new film resulted in nearly 30 people making public professions of faith. “Hope for Hurting Hearts” details the tragic events and circumstances experienced by Greg and Cathe Laurie, Jeremy Camp, and Nick Vujicic, and the subsequent emotional pain and testing of faith experienced by each.

Greg and Christopher Laurie

The theme of hope is interwoven throughout the film, which culminates in an exhortation by evangelist Greg Laurie to make a decision to place one’s hope in Jesus Christ. This decision was made by more than two dozen people at the recent pre-release screenings at Harvest Riverside and Harvest Orange County.

Greg and Cathe Laurie lost their eldest son, Christopher, in 2008 in a car accident, and “Hope for Hurting Hearts” delves into their reactions and feelings immediately following the tragedy and in the years afterward. Since the accident, the Lauries’ ministry to those who have experienced pain or suffering has grown tremendously.

Added to the Lauries’ story are the accounts of Dove Award-winning musician Jeremy Camp, and renowned speaker Nick Vujicic. Jeremy Camp, whose first wife died of cancer shortly after they were married, wrote the hit song “I Still Believe” in the aftermath. Nick Vujicic, president and CEO of Life Without Limbs, has spoken around the world about his severe disability and his faith—his unique circumstances affording him invitations even from leaders of countries with reputations for being “closed” to religious expression. The film is also narrated by Dr. James Dobson.

Nick Vujicic

As public figures, Camp, Vujicic, and the Lauries each have had to cope with their feelings of loss, inadequacy, and vulnerability in a more open atmosphere than those who suffer and grieve privately.

For Laurie, this public forum for his suffering has caused people to relate and pay even closer attention to the message he has been preaching for 40 years: that there is hope in Christ.

“Just because I’m a pastor doesn’t mean that I get a pass on pain. Pain knocks on every door. There are no exceptions . . . The message [of the film] is God is still with us, and He got us through it, and He gets us through it,” Laurie told those who attended the pre-release.

During the filming, the directors encouraged Camp, Vujicic, and the Lauries to reflect on their loss, not holding back their emotions. The result is a documentary Vujicic described as “raw,” “authentic,” and “sobering.”

Ad for the film

Following the film’s invitation to pray and accept Jesus as Savior and Lord, Laurie asked those who prayed to come forward to receive a Bible. About 30 people responded by walking forward.

“Hopefully this is a strong indicator of the film’s usefulness in meeting a very real need,” says Gary Zelasko, one of the film’s producers, “The film was created with the express purpose of relating to those who are hurting and inviting them to meet the One who suffers along with them and who offers comfort . . . It’s our prayer that people will come to know Jesus Christ in a personal way after watching these compelling testimonies of hope.”

“Hope for Hurting Hearts” is slotted for official public release through a web-based premiere through LifeWay Films, July 10-14. All are invited to register for this free event, including churches, groups, and individuals, at www.hope.harvest.org.

For more information, please contact Gary Zelasko, Director of Marketing, Greg Laurie’s Harvest Ministries, by phone at  951-354-1141, option 2, or by e-mail at at GaryZ@harvest.org


Dan Wooding, 72, who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, is an award winning British journalist now living in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for 49 years. They have two sons, Andrew and Peter, and six grandchildren who all live in the UK. He is the founder and international director of ASSIST (Aid to Special Saints in Strategic Times) and the ASSIST News Service (ANS) and he hosts the weekly “Front Page Radio” show on the KWVE Radio Network in Southern California and which is also carried throughout the United States and around the world. Besides this, Wooding is a host for His Channel Live, which is carried via the Internet to some 192 countries. Dan recently received two top media awards — the “Passion for the Persecuted” award from Open Doors US, and as one of the top “Newsmakers of 2011” from Plain Truth magazine. He is the author of some 45 books, the latest of which is “Caped Crusader: Rick Wakeman in the 1970s.” To order a copy, go to: Caped Crusader – Amazon

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