March 2, 2003
Scripture: Mark 4:3–6
Lauren } 3 Seekers’ teens
Mollie } 4 Seekers on BDT
Pat voice of God, Mr. Fixit
(Peter, Marian, Lauren, and Tobin enter.
LAUREN: (panting) Whew, what a climb. I wasn’t sure I was going to make it. This is the first time I’ve ever climbed Sugarloaf. It’s bigger than I thought.
TOBIN: Nah, this was easy. In Scouts we do tougher climbs than this.
MARIAN: Look at the clouds. You said there would be such a great view from here. I can’t see a thing.
LAUREN: It’s really weird like this. The clouds are so thick it’s like a dream.It feels like I could be anywhere.
MARIAN: Or in any time. In this cloud it’s like I could be living a hundred years ago.
TOBIN: Or a thousand.
(Peter enters but does not join them. Instead he goes to the side and appears to be talking to someone.)
LAUREN: Omigod! Look over there. Where did that man come from?
MARIAN: I don’t know, but he almost looks like Jesus.
TOBIN: Shut up! What’s he saying?
PETER: (To imaginary person) Moses, Elijah, good to see you again. So how did you do it, Moses? Leading thousands of people for 40 years in the wilderness? I’ve been leading 12 for three years just in Galilee and I’m about to lose my mind! They don’t get what I’ve been teaching them at all. I know the people you were teaching were just as slow to get it as this bunch, but you did it for 40 years! What was your secret? Etc.
LAUREN: Do you think it really is Jesus?
MARIAN: It looks like him.
TOBIN: But who is that guy he is talking to?
MARIAN: Moses, of course. And look, there’s Elijah! (points to imaginary person) This is so cool!
LAUREN: You mean like this is so weird.
PETER: And you, Elijah! Teach me another miracle. You brought down fire from heaven to show up the priests of Baal, and everyone believed. I’ve tried everything – healing the sick, casting out demons, cleansing lepers, even bringing Lazarus back from the dead – and they still don’t believe! Got any ideas?
LAUREN: Moses? Elijah? What is he saying? Do you hear anything?
TOBIN: I only hear a low rumbling, like thunder.
MARIAN: Maybe we are gonna have a storm.
PAT (as God): (amplified voice from foyer) This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.
MARIAN: This is so weird! We’re in this dense cloud, and it’s like we see someone who looks like Jesus, and he’s talking with two people who look like Moses and Elijah, the two greatest spiritual leaders of the Hebrew people! And now something that could be thunder but could be the voice of God calling Jesus his Son. I mean, I’m not sure what I’m seeing and hearing!
TOBIN: I heard it too. I’d say it’s kind of scary. I’ve never had this happen in Scouts.
LAUREN: This is so cool! Weird, but cool!
TOBIN: (To Peter) Uh, Jesus! This is the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. We have to commemorate this great day! Let’s build some shrines!
PETER: No, I don’t want any shrines to commemorate today. That’s not what we need at all. What the world needs are buildings that welcome people, that welcome my Body. What you need is a building that works for you and helps you work together, because you’re my Body. (Peter exits)
TOBIN: (To Lauren and Marian) What does that mean? A building that works for us that helps us work together?
LAUREN: Well, it seems to me that a building that works for us has pillows. One of the best things at 2025 has been sitting on pillows. We need to sit on pillows in the new church at Carroll Street.
MARIAN: Well, I think it it’s been the stairs to sit on during circle time. We need to make sure we can do that at Carroll Street.
TOBIN: You know why Andrew and Nathaniel and Jeremiah like to come? So they can fly paper airplanes from the third floor balcony. We have to have a way of doing that!
LAUREN: If that’s what Jesus wants, we better go talk to the building development team. They have to know what Jesus wants.
MARIAN: I hope Dad is willing to listen. (To Lauren) You know how he gets when he thinks everything is settled and then we want changes.
TOBIN: Come on, they’re meeting at 7:30 tomorrow morning in the parking lot at Carroll Street. (all 3exit)
(Dave, Mollie, Alan, Peter, and Doug enter with card table, folding chairs, and set of building plans. Pull out the easel with paper and markers. Sit down and unroll the plans.)
DAVE: OK, now we’re in the final stages. Painting begins tomorrow, and the carpet will be installed Thursday.
DOUG: We’re arranging for kitchen cabinets and appliances to be installed next Monday and the plumber will do hookup on Tuesday. We should be ready for worship two weeks from yesterday.
MOLLIE: Glenn will do a sound and light check tomorrow, working around the painters. Peter and John Schultz will hang the cross and set up the altar. Sandra will drop off the kitchen utensils, so we need someone to hang them.
ALAN: I can do that. And I’ll be here for when the dining tables and chairs and all the sanctuary chairs get delivered.
PETER: The decorations for the children’s room and the teens room will be ready next week. I’ll bring over the hymnals.
DAVE: Now the important thing is, no changes. It’s not the money. We’re on budget, with about a thousand dollars left over. But we really can’t delay any more.
(Everyone agrees. They study the plans, paint samples and carpet samples, etc. Marian, Lauren, and Tobin enter.)
TOBIN: We need to talk to you! We just had the most amazing thing happen! We had climbed up Sugarloaf Mountain and then the clouds closed in and we saw Jesus.
LAUREN: Yeah, Jesus somehow showed up. We all saw him. He was talking and suddenly Moses and Elijah were there
MARIAN: (interrupting)…and then it was like we heard God speaking. And it was all so different and new it was like we had changed. And Tobin said we should build some shrines…
TOBIN: (picking up the thought)…to commemorate the experience, you know, because it was so unusual. Like Jesus appeared in Montgomery County!
LAUREN:…but Jesus said he didn’t want any shrines, but he wanted buildings that worked for people and helped people work together…
MARIAN:…so we got to thinking about what made 2025 work for Seekers,
TOBIN:…and we figured out what the best stuff is and you need to include it. (Tobin moves to easel and writes ideas down as Lauren, Marian and he say them).
LAUREN: Like we need to have a pillow room, like we used to have on the third floor. You know, filled with big pillows so we can sit on the floor and talk and stuff.
DAVE: Well, that’s a good idea, but we really don’t have a room to do it in, and we don’t have any money to buy any pillows. We’re moving in within two weeks and we can’t make any changes.
MARIAN: Dad, the other thing is that we need to have a staircase for us to sit on when we have circle time. The only way that the kids really get into circle time is to be on that staircase, so we thought we could put one about here (gestures). And we need it to fly paper airplanes from.
DOUG: Didn’t you hear what Keith just said? It’s too late to make any changes.
TOBIN: And we need to cut a hole in the roof and through the floor of the sanctuary so that the younger kids can dangle stuff on long strings.
DAVE: (sighs) Are you crazy! We can’t do that. We’re ready to have the painters come and the furniture delivered. We finally got the building to pass inspection, and we just can’t go cutting a hole in the roof and in the floor! We’d have to figure out how to keep the rain from keep in. And we’d have to get it re-inspected.
LAUREN: And you know how we have the Christmas pageant every year? Well, it would be a lot better if we had a real pony or donkey for Mary to ride in on. They used to keep hay up in the attic at 2025 and we could store it in the house at Carroll Street. But since Tobin and the Boy Scouts are planning grass on the roof the pony could eat that. So you just have to add a floor to make the elevator go up to the roof so that the pony could eat the grass there…
ALAN: I knew the grass on the roof was a bad idea.
DOUG: But it was a great idea! The Journeying With Children mission group approved it and when we put the idea to the congregation almost everyone loved it. And it didn’t cost much and it didn’t take any time to do it.
DAVE: (sighs) But we nearly didn’t pass inspection because of it. And we can’t make changes like that in the last week of construction. It would cost us a fortune and set us back another year. We started construction back when Bush was elected President and we’re still not done.
MARIAN: And we also need a tunnel like the one that went under 2025 so we can act out Jesus bringing Lazarus back to life and at Easter time we can act out the resurrection story when Marjory preaches it.
DAVE: I appreciate your interest, guys, but we don’t have enough money for any changes?
LAUREN: We could sell pony rides.
MARIAN: And we could give tours of the tunnel for a fee.
TOBIN: We could take up a special offering, like we do for Christmas.
ALAN: I’ll do it. Everybody cough it up!
(Alan takes up offering. BDT put in wallets, watches, rings, etc.)
DOUG: Well, if we get enough money, I think we could look at how much the changes would cost us. If it builds community and looks OK, maybe we should make the changes.
MOLLIE: That reminds me of something I’ve needed to bring up. The painting that Sandra is doing for that space (gestures on the plan) has turned out to be 18 inches too big. We looked at it and we can’t cut the painting down. So we have to move that wall two feet.
DAVE: (groaning) NOOOOOO!
ALAN: Oh, yeah, I just found out that the cabinets we ordered were discontinued and all the ones we have seen are two inches wider, so we have to move the wall a little to the left.
PETER: And we tried out the stage for the children’s area and it’s too small. If we just bring it out two feet here (points on the plan) it’ll work.
DOUG: (pointing to plan) I think we need to move that duct back to where it was.
DAVE: (sighs) Enough! We can’t make any changes.
TOBIN: But Jesus told us we ought to be flexible instead of rigid.
MARIAN and LAUREN: Yeah. We need to be able to change.
PETER: Maybe we could have a congregational meeting to raise the need for changes…
ALAN: (interrupting) ..and pray about it. I know how prayer can work.
PETER: (continuing)…and then have a discernment process.
DOUG: Not another discernment process!
MOLLIE: I don’t want another meeting, but I think the congregation has to process this.
BDT: (begin arguing. Doug, Peter and Alan fold chairs and move to a corner, Tobin, and Marian move easel and plans and move to a corner. Lauren exits to foyer.)
MOLLIE: Look at us! Look at what we are becoming! We’re not working together anymore. We’re changing into something I don’t even know anymore!
DAVE: We have to get back to working together. We have to fix this. We are stuck!
MOLLIE: I heard that there’s a Mr. Fixit that can help. Let’s call him!
DAVE: OK. (Dials cell phone.) Mr. Fixit! Mr. Fixit! (Mollie and Dave move to a corner)
PAT: (enters with basket of toys) Did you call? I’m Mr. Fixit.
DAVE: Glad you were available.
ALAN: We’re in a terrible fix.
MARIAN: We’re stuck.
PAT: Nooooooo. How can that be? This is the Seekers Church. I’ve heard of your excellent processes and how creative you are. What’s the problem?
(Several clowns all at once describe what’s going on)
DAVE: We’re counting on you to fix things up.
PAT: I help lots of churches that need fixing. Your problem is an easy one to diagnose. You just need some coordination. And I am just the person you need. I have excellent coordination.
(Pat tries to juggle handfuls of toys, but they all fall. He looks crushed. The clowns help pick them up and try to hand or toss them to him. The toys fall into more chaos, but eventually they get together.)
PAT: It looks like I need some help. Help me pass out the toys. Many hands can keep them all in the air at the same time.
(Clowns pass out the toys into the congregation.)
PAT: (gesturing) This side by the doors is side 1, and this side by the piano is side 2. When I count to 3, everyone on side 1 will toss their toy to someone on side 2, and everyone on side 2 will toss their toy to someone on side 1. Now don’t toss or pass them all to one person on the other side. And be sure the toys don’t hit each other. Make sure your toss has a nice easy arc. When you get a toy, toss it back, and don’t let any on them fall.
(Pat counts to 3, everyone throws a toy, and chaos results. Toys are everywhere and the clown’s “help” only makes things worse.)
PAT: Wait a minute. Wait a minute! We need coordination. We need to simplify this and work together. Let’s keep side 1 and side 2 as they were. (Waits) OK, give all the toys to side 1.
(Everyone passes the toys to side 1, with the clowns helping)
PAT: OK, on the count of 3, toss all the toys to side 2, and when you on side 2 catch a toy, toss it back to side 1. (Clowns “help” with directions.)
PAT: 1, 2, 3.
(Side 1 begins tossing the toys, but chaos ensues again.)
PAT: (Sternly) You just aren’t following directions. I’ll make it real simple. Have faith. It’s going to work this time. Our problem is that we’ve been taking sides. We should all be on the same side, the inside. Let’s make a circle around the perimeter of the room.
(Clowns help everyone form the communion circle.)
PAT: Now we hand the toys around the circle, on the count of 3. 1, 2, 3.
(Congregation passes the toys smoothly.)
PAT: I new we could do it! Seekers can do anything if we get on the same side!
(From the foyer, Peter brings a bagel on a plate and Lauren brings pieces of bagels in paint buckets. Marian brings a bottle of juice and a goblet, and Peter brings trays of cups with juice.)
PAT: I don’t know about building shrines. I know we’re not going to move the tunnel from this building to Carroll Street. I know we know something about having fun as the Body of Christ.
(Mollie and Pat serve communion.)
(Alan takes up offering in paint bucket. Offertory is Joni Mitchell’s “Pave Paradise and Put Up a Parking Lot”
White robe or garment for Peter
Microphone in foyer linked to P.A. system
5 folding chairs
Set of Carroll Street blueprints
Easel with drawing of Carroll Street floor plan
Paper paint bucket for offering
Basket of toys (rubber and nerf balls, beanbags, and Kooze balls)
2 dozen bagels, all but one cut into 8 pieces
4 plastic or paper paint buckets
Bottle(s) of juice
3 oz. juice cups
Trays to hold juice cups