ALBANY, GA (WALB) - A movie filmed right here in Albany is having a tremendous impact around the nation. "Fireproof" is doing just what Sherwood Church movie-makers hoped and prayed it would do--save marriages.
The movie's theme revolves around fire but it's bringing a range of elements to audiences throughout the United States. "I cried the whole time to be honest with you. It was a really touching movie," said moviegoer April Huie.
There are touching scenes on movie screens but they're reflecting real life at home. Sherwood Church couple Jerry and Melanie Carter admit their marriage was in trouble.
"It was definitely in danger," said Melanie.
Eight years of marriage led to eight years of bottled up emotions. "When I actually saw the movie, it brought a lot of things out," said Jerry.
They're now closer because of a movie called "Fireproof". "There were areas of hardened hearts that God's breaking through," said Melanie.
"It has helped our marriage in a lot of ways," said Jerry. But that marriage counseling via a movie is reaching beyond Sherwood and Albany, Georgia.
"We wanted to strengthen marriages through this movie," said "Fireproof" Co-writer and Producer Stephen Kendrick. Audiences all over the nation are relating to Caleb and Catherine Holt, the main characters in the movie with a troubled marriage. Everyday Kendrick hears a different story about how the movie has saved a marriage.
"It'll bring tears to your eyes to read the stories of couples that are heading for divorce or have gone through a divorce already and say this movie has redirected us," said Kendrick.
Redirection may be what's needed in the United States where there's a high divorce rate. "Earlier this year, April 15th, a report came out that said divorce is costing our nation $112 billion a year," said Kendrick.
So Sherwood hopes to reduce that with a film that was birthed from a prayer. "To see it go to theaters and then see the impact from it is definitely an attribute to the answer of prayer," said Kendrick.
It certainly answered the Carter's prayers. "I didn't have much hope but when it started happening, I knew it was God and I knew it was real," said Melanie.
"If it can fix our marriage like it has, it can fix anybody's," said Jerry. It's proof that marriage can survive a fire. Sometimes it just needs more people to help fight it.
Sherwood is also expanding upon the success of the movie with "Fireproof My Marriage" conferences. There's one coming up on Saturday at Sherwood from 9:30 to 4. For more information, call 800-848-6329 or visit www.garysmalley.com