Carol different tune

Church production gives Dickens’ tale a religious twist
Thursday, December 4, 2003 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 6:48 p.m. CDT, Monday, July 21, 2008

In John Worre’s “The Gospel According to Scrooge” — soon to be performed at Christian Chapel in Columbia — Ebenezer Scrooge does not simply become a good person, he comes to accept the Gospel of Christ.

The full-length dramatic production follows the traditional story of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” but it adds a bit more humor and music. Most of the dozen songs were written for the play.

This is the first time Christian Chapel has performed “The Gospel According to Scrooge.”

The Rev. Rich Pruitt, who directs the play, said he chose it because Scrooge appeals to the seasonal expectations of Christmas. But he also said he chose it because of its moral message of change.

With a cast of more than 50, Linda Waage, a member of the congregation, said it’s one of the largest plays the church has done. “We’ve had a lot of fun doing it,” she said.

Paul Delcourt, who plays the pawnbroker, has been in several church productions. He said he likes this play because of its humor.

“I’m lucky,” he said. “The two scenes that I’m in are more laugh-out-loud scenes.”

Jordan Pruitt, who plays young Scrooge, said his favorite parts are the funny ones.

“I like it when Scrooge talks to the death angel,” the 12-year-old said. “He does a really good job, because he makes it funny.”

Mike Mooney, who plays the adult Scrooge, said he likes the atmosphere of “The Gospel According to Scrooge” because it’s a church service that just looks like it’s a play.

Mooney, an award-winning playwright experienced in theater, called the play “performance ministry.”

“The whole object is to minister to the audience,” he said. “It’s a spiritual awakening.”

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