MOUNT DESERT — “The Christians” is playing at the Acadia Repertory Theatre Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8:15 p.m. with Sunday matinees on July 16 and 23 at 2 p.m.
In the production, 20 years ago, Pastor Paul’s church was nothing more than a modest storefront. Now, he presides over a congregation of thousands, with classrooms for Sunday School, a coffee shop in the lobby and a baptismal font as big as a swimming pool. Today should be a day of celebration. But Paul is about to preach a sermon that will shake the foundations of his church’s belief.
“This play could be subtitled ‘Faith and Consequences’,” said the play’s director, Andrew Mayer. “Pastor Paul has had a very sincere change of heart, one which will resonate for a lot of people who have spent time thinking about big issues of religion and faith. He doesn’t anticipate the different ways his message will be received, and the schism that results is enough to shake his faith all over again.
Lucas Hnath wrote a play that is reverent, relevant and welcoming to everyone, from evangelicals to atheists, and those of any other faith. “Any play that gets rave reviews from both the New York Times and Christianity Today has to be doing something right!” said Mayer.
After the matinee performance on July 16, the Acadia Rep will hold a post-show discussion with members of the cast and special guests from houses of worship across Mount Desert Island. The discussion will begin at about 3:30 p.m. Anyone may join in, even those who saw the play on a different day. There will be no performance that evening.
Also showing at the Acadia Repertory Theatre is Cheryl Willis’ adaptation of “The Velveteen Rabbit.” The Children’s Theatre performances take place every Wednesday and Saturday at 10:30 a.m. through Aug. 19.
Contact the Acadia Repertory Theatre at 244-7260 or [email protected]