The Jazz Singer and a Soulful Doctor.

The story of Dr. Lachlan Forrow, MD, and a patient who needed palliative care but had never been asked the simple question: “What’s a good day for you?” until Dr. Forrow walked into her room.

We’ve been working with The Conversation Project for the past year, producing videos with Co-Founder and Director Ellen Goodman and her team. It’s an extraordinary group with an extraordinary mission which is described below.

The Conversation Project is dedicated to helping people talk about their wishes for end-of-life care. Too many people are dying in a way they wouldn’t choose, and too many of their loved ones are left feeling bereaved, guilty, and uncertain. It’s time to transform our culture so we shift from not talking about dying to talk about it. It’s time to share the way we want to live at the end of our lives. And it’s time to communicate about the kind of care we want and don’t want for ourselves.

We believe that the place for this to begin is at the kitchen table—not in the intensive care unit—with the people we love before it’s too late. Together we can make these difficult conversations easier. We can make sure that our own wishes and those of our loved ones are expressed and respected.


1 comment

  1. Telling Your Story Through Video: A behind-the-scenes look at our new video for faith leaders
    By Reverend Rosemary Lloyd, 03/15/2016

    At The Conversation Project we aim to reach people where they live, work, and pray. To reach any of these segments with our message about the importance of having crucial conversations about wishes for end-of-life care, we understand that we need to deliver about eight different kinds of messages on a variety of platforms.

    We’ve had great response to other videos we’ve posted on our website and shared with our national network (like “The Jazz Singer” which you can watch here). So when we decided to deliver a strong, clear message to our “pray” constituency across the country, we turned again to one of our trusted partners at Walker Creek Media, Nubar Alexanian, to help us.

    Nubar and I trekked out together with his favorite assistant for a full day of shooting, to three locations, to interview leading members of the clergy in Boston. We spoke with Rev. Gloria White-Hammond MD, Rev. Nancy Taylor and Rabbi Ronne Freidman who generously shared their experiences of bringing The Conversation Project to their congregations.

    Nubar has a sensitive and skillful eye for seeing people through a camera lens and capturing something essential about them on video. He created warm portraits of each of the featured speakers sitting in their offices at Bethel AME, Old South Church, and Temple Israel as they spoke of the impact The Conversation Project is having and can have on how people meet the challenge of talking about their mortality.

    Nubar also has a storyteller’s ear. At the end of a long day of filming the interviews, he had more than 100 minutes of video footage that now had to be edited down to just 3 minutes to make a short, clear, and attention-holding program. (I think he must have the patience of a saint!)

    When you see the final product, I hope you’ll agree: it makes a sensitive, clear case that having The Conversation–sooner rather than later—is a gift we give our loved ones. And it has a hopeful message that all clergy can share with their congregations: Using the Starter Kit is a tremendous opportunity to learn, as Rev. Nancy Taylor says, “It’s not just about the end of life; it’s about how you want to live until you die.”

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *