A New Testament Gospera

Creator: Dee Downing
Age rating: Everyone
A modern-day missionary, insecure and unsure of herself, stumbles 2000-years into the past to help a struggling Messiah overcome sadistic rulers. Complications arise as 1st century sexist attitudes conspire against her.
Synopsis: SISTER MARY, a secretly gifted missionary, prefers to keep to herself in her room at the Parrish. She spends a lot of time watching reality-TV; specifically, the one with the ball room dancing. In an attempt to force her out of isolation, her superiors send her out into the world. She must find a densely populated area and tell a myriad of strangers about the gospel story.

By mid-afternoon, Sister Mary is on her platform being ignored by the self-indulged passers-by as she sings the message. Suddenly, from her vantage point, Sister Mary witnesses a possible child abduction blending-in with the street activity. However, the child could simply be spoiled, unruly, and rebellious. The WOULD-BE ABDUCTOR notices Sister Mary. By mid-song, he slowly moves closer to observe her body language. The moment Sister Mary’s body language betrays her, the would-be abductor pulls out a gun and pulls the trigger! Sister Mary disappears in a myriad of guns smoke.

As the smoke clears, Sister Mary springs to life in the middle of a desert, checking her torso for a bullet hole. Surprisingly, she doesn’t find one. It is not long before she realizes she is not in Kansas anymore; it is suddenly nighttime. In an alternating scene, three singing wise men travel through a different part of the desert towards Bethlehem.

As Sister Mary springs to her feet, she tries to make out two travelers in the distance, not realizing they are Joseph and Mary on their way to Bethlehem. As she scurries to catch up, three mystics from the Order of the Essenes (a.k.a. TRIO), observe Joseph and Mary from a distance. But when they see Sister Mary in-pursuit, they realize they brought her too far back in time. Trio hurries to remedy their mistake and put Sister Mary in the time they intended; about 30-years after this point.

In the back a tent where they set up shop, Sister Mary is awaken by MARTHA, who refers to her as just, “MARY”. Martha tells Mary to join her in the Jordan Valley because "The Baptist" is in town; and rumor has it, for the last time. In a futile attempt to convince Martha she is not her sister, Mary realizes this may be her chance to meet the famed Messiah. He might have the power to send her back home. Mary agrees to accompany Martha.

As the Baptist does his thing to the rhythm of a rapp, the Messiah never shows. Constantly observing the crowed, Mary earlier dismissed the arrival of a self-conscious, insecure, introvert of man trying not to be noticed. This couldn't be him. As the Baptist’s set ends, the people return to their lives. However, Mary is confused and disappointed; she never saw the Messiah. As Mary and Martha prepare to depart, she notices the Baptist nearly threatening the introvert who declines to take over the ministry. As Mary and Martha get several feet away, the introvert begins nervously singing beatitudes. Recognizing the words, Mary turns around in shock. That’s him?

Mary’s quest to get home has made her bold and outspoken. Howbeit, she soon discovers these are not the best qualities for a woman in this era. As six men from the crowd join the Messiah, Mary hatches a plan for her to become a disciple. This way she can stick close to him and maybe at some point convince him to send her home. Unfortunately, Mary learns a hard lesson as the six men bully her into submission. All the while, Martha does not understand what has come over Mary.

It's not long before the Messiah and his new followers encounter the Pharisees; a hostile, violent, and territorial religious sect. The leader, chief priest ANNAS, tries to sucker the Messiah into a trap. The plot succeeds up to the point when Mary realizes the Messiah (and his new friends) are intimidated by this new threat. This does not sit well with Mary’s plan to get home. Using her 21st century savvy, she secretly intervenes and saves the day. Allowing the Messiah to take all the credit, the Pharisees now see him as a force to be reckoned with.

Although, the Messiah has picked up six more followers, he has come to realize Mary is the force behind the positive outcomes of his close encounters with the Pharisees. Be that as it may, because of the men, he refuses to give her disciple status. Regardless, Judas has come to see Mary as a threat to his position. In spite of the already existing sexist attitudes among the men, Judas hatches plot after plot to humiliate Mary in the eyes of the Messiah. But each plot only makes Mary more bold and more determined.

Judas finally pits Martha against Mary to keep her distracted. At the same time, he convinces the Messiah to storm the temple where the Pharisees have a thriving enterprise profiting off the poor. In a fit of rage, the Messiah storms off. His disciples follow as Mary rushes to stop them. While in route, Mary is stopped by Trio and learns they are responsible for bringing her back in time. The Messiah and the Twelve arrive to the temple. Once there, they disrupt all the buying and selling. In the aftermath, the Messiah stops Judas from leaving with a basket full of silver coins. The Messiah and Judas butt heads. As they depart, Judas drops the basket and angrily storms out the temple.

The Pharisees return to the temple only to find it in shambles. They realize only one man can be responsible. As they try to come up with the ultimate plan to kill the Messiah, Judas returns to the temple. This gives Annas an excellent idea. He offers Judas 30 pieces of silver to play a part. Judas accepts.

As the Messiah, his disciples, Mary and Martha recoup the next day by the sea shore, Trio arrives to confirm the Messiah. He has Mary and her 21st century savvy to thank for getting him to this point. Mary also discovers her role is really that of MARY MAGDALENE. This new epiphany helps to curb Mary’s resentment towards Martha. They leave to go home and prepare for the Passover feast.

After the guests to arrive, Mary makes one last plea to the Messiah to make her a disciple. By the end of the song, Judas leaves to fulfill his plan to betray the Messiah. At this point, after all they’ve gone through together, the men are more open to the idea of making Mary a disciple; and with Judas’ departure, there is now an opening. The Passover feast ends by celebrating Mary as a new disciple. With the help of Martha, Mary teaches the Messiah (and the Twelve) the basic steps to ballroom dancing.

After the celebration, the Messiah and the now-Eleven venture down the road to the Garden of Gethsemane. The now-Eleven are exhausted and fall asleep as the Messiah continues on. Suddenly, Judas returns accompanied by a battalion of palace guards to arrest the Messiah. The now-Eleven spring to their feet and find anything they can use as weapons; Simon finds a sword. The two groups have a stand-off. It is not long before Simon and the head-guard clash swords.

Mary arrives only to watch from a distance. Simon wins the battle by cutting the head-guard’s ear. He falls. Before Simon can finish him, the Messiah intervenes. He heals the head-guard’s ear, and sends the now-Eleven away. Simon angrily tosses his sword before departing. Mary is enraged. Almost subconsciously, she picks up the sword that Simon tossed. But before she can attack, the Messiah signals her not to. Mary runs away in tears.

The Messiah is arrested, incarcerated, tortured, convicted, and sentenced to death.

Three days later, Mary and Martha find the Messiah's tomb empty. Trio arrives to tell Mary the secret to returning home. Howbeit, Mary is now resistant to the idea of leaving.

Latest Work

All Work

  • Script 1 - Dee's Original Draft
    03/10/17
    Creative Notes:
    In this fun-filled musical fantasy, a modern day missionary is hurled 2000-years into the past. To her surprise, she encounters an insecure and bumbling messiah. Now forced to aid on a mission to challenge injustice inflicted by evil men who rule the oppressed with an iron fist. Will the messiah's mission be helped or hindered by her unprecedented 21st century way of thinking?