The People’s Passion is a beautiful hybrid of theatre and worship that was used effectively in Lanarkshire to bring the Gospel to life. It was performed as a service of worship in five towns throughout Holy Week. The evenings opened with one of the local clergy welcoming the congregation (and usually opening in prayer) followed by a short introduction from one of our own leads – to rehearse the congregation for their participation. The passion play then followed. It included two points where the congregation had responsive lines (Palm Sunday and the crucifixion) as well as two points of congregational singing (Palm Sunday and the entombment). The evening was closed with a benediction.
For Wishaw, Lanark and Carluke, this was the first Passion Play in the history of the town (as far as we can gather). For Motherwell it was the first since the 1950s. In each of the towns, the services were part of joint, ecumenical celebrations for Holy Week.
For the first time our work had British Sign Language (BSL) interpretation, which opened up our work to a new audience and allowed us to engage with the local deaf club. Three live stream users and around four in the church made use of this. For the first time our work had British Sign Language (BSL) interpretation, which opened up our work to a new audience and allowed us to engage with the local deaf club.
It also brought people from all different churches, and those of no particular faith, together. There was really good discussion amongst the people who were there on the night I was there.
It felt like we’d been present at Jesus’ cruxifiction.
It was very moving and made you feel as if you were there and part of the story.
I am having a difficult time at the moment, struggling and questioning my faith at times, and seeing this presentation helped me to feel stronger and touched me deeply.