Article written by Nicole Ng
Early March 2022, a diverse group of individuals – ranging from altar servers, youth, to the young at heart – gathered at the St. Faustina Hall in CDM for a briefing on what would be the church’s first live play in nearly three years.
With just slightly over a month to work with, and a relatively small team, many felt it would take a miracle for the play to be staged.
And then it happened. Five weeks later, on April 9, The CDM Easter Trilogy opened to a sold-out show. The second night also saw a full-house crowd. The hall – which once stood silent for months during the pandemic – was filled once again with laughter, suspense and even tears as the audience witnessed Christ’s death, resurrection and His ascension.
Care was taken to ensure that the script was adapted nearly word-for-word from the four Gospels to create a seamless Passion and Easter story, a narrative familiar with the audience, and brought to life by the cast and crew.
The fruition of the production was nothing short of a miracle, but an even greater miracle was what went on behind the scenes as the play started taking shape.
Over the weeks, the cast and crew grew from 25 to more than 50 members strong. The youngest was just eight. They met in that hall up to five days a week to rehearse, plan and set up.
As the team grew in size, friendships blossomed. Deep connections fostered by the cast and crew, individuals brought together by their faith in God, are testament to a miracle that extends beyond the production. The social disconnect acutely experienced over the pandemic seemed to dissolve.
Keith Gonsalvez, who played Jesus, said for him the five weeks of practice were life-changing.
“God answered my prayers for me to belong to a church family, and I am grateful for that. I came in knowing only a few people but now I have so many friends whom I can call my brothers and sisters. Truly, I have witnessed what it means to serve the Lord and to do everything for His glory,” he said.
Many echoed the sentiments of castmate Keshvin Kennedy: “Bringing the play to life was a beautiful and memorable experience. I enjoyed the whole process. I made new friends and grew closer to those that I already knew.”
Similarly, the younger ones missed their time spent at rehearsals so much that they’ve had their parents arrange meet-ups with their fellow castmates!
It truly was an Easter miracle for the cast, crew, and parishioners alike, to be back in church. The team is grateful to be back doing what they love and serving God.