When one brother is diagnosed with a shattering illness, another brother is forced to face his demons as the family struggles to pick up the pieces and stay together in this powerful portrait of love and what it means to truly care for each other.
Director Ernesto Quintero’s documentary, A Sacred Journey is a formidable film that takes the audience on a voyage no one ever wishes to endure. After the family is dealt with an unimaginable blow, Quintero decides to pick-up his camera and start documenting every phase of his brother Juan’s devastating diagnosis of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). The film puts a much-needed spotlight on the family which sacrifices everything to honor their loved one’s will to live.
“It’s been an epic 20 years in the making and we finally get to share my brother Juan’s story with the world. While ours is very personal, I know it will resonate with audiences everywhere because the fact is you’re either a caregiver or a care receiver or will be one of the two at some point in your life.” said Quintero.
Quintero’s film reaffirms the horrors of ALS, which according to Johns Hopkins most people who develop ALS are between the ages of 40 and 70, although the disease can occur at a younger age. It occurs throughout the world with no racial, ethnic or socioeconomic boundaries. It affects as many as 30,000 in the United States, with 5,000 new cases diagnosed each year. A Sacred Journey also gives an intimate look at how caregivers often put the needs of their loved ones before themselves, and over time that selflessness makes an impact—both inspirational and challenging. The Quintero family is just like the 66 million Americans who face the challenges of the caregiving role and often feel alone in
their struggles—their story shows how they’ve been able to overcome tremendous odds and stay together.
1. Continue raising ALS and DBA awareness through touring schools, conventions, conferences, medical institutions, and film festivals.
2. Strengthen the ALS and MS registry with the overall goal of helping those unaccounted for to get assistance.
3. Address a need for adequate nursing, with the intention of changing policy. There are presently no agencies that will fulfill the needs that Juan requires.
4. Celebrate the 66 million caregivers that exist in this country, and to provide tools and resources they can use to live healthier lives.
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"Sometimes love is the only answer." Ernesto Quintero