Victory recreates old Jerusalem for ‘Passion’Two thieves, an arrogant governor with very clean hands and an innocent man toting a cross will converge at a bustling Jerusalem marketplace three times today as part of The Passion, at 6, 7 and 8 p.m. at Victory Lutheran Brethren Church.
By: Kari Lucin, The Jamestown Sun
Two thieves, an arrogant governor with very clean hands and an innocent man toting a cross will converge at a bustling Jerusalem marketplace three times today as part of The Passion, at 6, 7 and 8 p.m. at Victory Lutheran Brethren Church.
Everyone is invited.
Between 60 and 70 volunteers cooperated to make the interactive event featuring the crucifixion of Jesus Christ possible, sewing costumes, building and painting scenery and learning lines.
“This has been a labor of love,” said the Rev. Shawn Bowman, senior pastor at Victory, as he stood in the church’s simulated Jerusalem of 2,000 years ago.
Victory’s Passion is not a standard passion play, showing the last days of Jesus. Instead, it is designed to be interactive and child-friendly, putting visitors right in the middle of the Passion, Bowman said.
It also ties the words of Old and New Testament prophets Isaiah and John the Baptist in with the life of Jesus.
Visitors will be ushered into a recreation of a Jerusalem marketplace in the time of Christ, complete with a city skyline, a well and marketplace booths with activities for young people.
At the Seder Shop, people can learn about the Jewish traditional Passover meal, Seder. At the Spice Shop, children can grind their own spices and bring them home, or make their potpourri bundles in fragrances that would have been popular in Jesus’ time.
Children will also be able to make their own candle holders out of clay and create dipped candles to go in them, or make dreidels.
The show will begin in the marketplace, with an attempted theft, followed by the entrance of a certain Jewish carpenter who has been condemned to die on the cross.
Not all the events noted in the Gospels are included in The Passion, given that the entire experience is only an hour long. Jesus’ condemnation by Pontius Pilate and Herod are omitted, for example.
“We wanted to capture the Passion, but we also wanted to capture a facet of the Jewish life while Christ was living,” Bowman said.
All seven of the phrases Jesus said while on the cross, according to the Gospels, will be included, Bowman confirmed.
“We’re not going to make it a gory, graphic scene,” he added, emphasizing that the event is very child-friendly, and that 3- and 4-year-olds may attend.
The Passion ends with a reminder that the crucifixion is not the end of the story, and that the audience will be able to hear how Jesus defeated death — at each person’s own church on Easter Sunday.
“We’re capturing the essence of Easter, the purpose of Easter, that a little child could digest and believe,” Bowman said.
Although walk-in visitors will be permitted as space allows, reservations can be made by calling 251-1570.
Victory Lutheran Brethren Church is located at 510 Ninth Ave. SW, and the event is handicapped-accessible. For more information, visit www.findvictory.org.
Sun reporter Kari Lucin can be reached at 701-952-8453
or by email at email@example.com