A documentary outlining the jailhouse ministry of former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey is being screened at Sundance Film Festival.
'Fall to Grace', was produced and directed by Alexandra Pelosi, daughter of former House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The film, created for HBO, will air in March. It records the efforts of McGreevey to help reform the lives of women in a Hudson County jail.
Pelosi was intrigued by McGreevey, whom she called a "reformed politician" in an interview with Reuters.
"They wouldn't let him move on... everyone writes him off because of some mistake he made before," Pelosi said.
The 'mistake' was an affair that the twice-married McGreevey had with another man while he was governor. McGreevey hired Golan Cipel, an Israel national and a former member of the Israeli Coast Guard, to head NJ's Homeland Security efforts. Indications that the affair with Cipel was about to erupt caused McGreevey to publicly resign in 2004, after calling himself "a gay American."
McGreevey and his wife Dina Matos divorced in 2008. Matos, currently the executive director of the CARES Foundation, has lived in Springfield since 2004.
McGreevey, who started his political life as mayor of Woodbridge in 1991, entered an Episcopalian seminary after his gubernatorial resignation. He was also hired as a professor of Ethics at Kean University.
One of the requirements of his efforts to become an Episcopalian priest was to work helping those in need. That led to McGreevey to the Hudson County Correctional Center, where he volunteers for Integrity House, a substance abuse rehabilitation program.
McGreevey's mission has been to work with incarcerated women and helping them overcome drug addiction. That was the man whom Pelosi followed around for more than a year, documenting his efforts to help the jailed female inmates.
The former governor's attempts to become a priest have been put on hold, but he still continues his work with Integrity House. He also plans to attend the Sundance Festival where the film on his work will be showcased.
"I'm a broken person and many of us are broken," McGreevey told Reuters. "I don't always make the right decisions. I have failed, but that's everyone. Women in jail are also deserving of the same transformation and same redemption."