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dramashare.jpgMonologue about the builder of the cross on which Jesus was crucified. Can be used at any time of year, including Easter. Based on the ideas in a script written by Kate Rothacker.

“This script is made available through a special arrangement with Dramashare. If you are looking for free scripts for VBS, summer camps, youth meetings, mime, Children’s sermons, puppetry, clowning, human video, choral reading, interpretive movement, or a sermon starter, then DramaShare is one of the best Drama Ministry resources I have ever found. It is the world’s most visited Christian drama ministry web site. Purchase an annual membership to DramaShare ministry at the link http://dramashare.org/item.php?id=2959 to get free access to over 1,500 royalty free scripts on-line.” -Ken


Staging Information

Keywords

cross, carpenter, remorse

Cast


Monologue, likely male

Costumes


either traditional or contemporary

Sound and Lighting


Mic for actor
a tight spot on the actor would be useful, with the balance of the acting area in shadow.

Props


a few very large nails and a carpenter’s belt, hammer

Run Time – (approx)


5 minutes


Script



Actor comes on stage, looks down at mimed cross upstage, speaks

It is finished! My work completed. I delivered as was contracted, six stout cross beams, strong enough to hold the weight of a full grown dying man.
I’m always pleased to see a job completed. Pleased with the feeling of accomplishment. And also with the financial rewards as well, no reason to deny that.
I am a carpenter, . . . a fine carpenter, like my father . .and his father before him. A carpenter, an honorable profession.
I have made the things that the people of Jerusalem take for granted. Things on which they sit, or lie, or eat, . . . . . . sometimes those on which they die.
Once delivered I no longer think of these articles, or the people who pay me handsomely for supplying them. Should I worry about the thoughts or character of the one seated on the chair I have made? Should I lay awake wondering if the meals served on my tables tonight were healthy and nourishing?
The very thought is preposterous.
Well, I do admit to some discomfort when first the Roman guard gave me this task, but honestly more than I chaffed at this work, I chaffed at having to perform services for the Romans. Overbearing fools! And at any rate, the crimes committed by those who will die on these works of art were done in full knowledge that retribution would be swiftly and painfully accomplished. And further, Roman gold buys food as well as any other gold!

looks over shoulder, upstage

Yet when I saw my handiwork on hillside of Golgotha, great chills ran throughout my body.

moves downstage as though begging audience to understand

What have I done?
What have I done?

more confident

Look, it is surely nothing to be ashamed of. I did my job, nothing more, nothing less. I did as I was expected, and I did it well.

less self-assured

Why, then, is it strangely different this time? I see the three in the holding pen there, that they deserve their fate I have no doubt. That one, Elishua, one of the most feared robbers in the nation. No highway was safe by night or day with the likes of him about. Yet I heard he had some miraculous conversion when the prisoner yonder entered Jerusalem some days ago. In fact, I’ve heard it was the letting down of his guard that allowed the Romans to capture Elishua.
Nonetheless, who am I to judge whether the crimes of these men were sufficient to merit death on the cross? That weighty matter is Pilate’s domain. My role is simply to find a strong tree out of which to fashion the beams, which will bear the broken bodies high that all might see the shame of sin.

quieter
They say that the Nazarene was also a carpenter. A man like me. Could that be why my soul seems ill at ease?

annoyed

I could not know that. For all I know dozens of carpenters have found cruel support from the work of my hands… (holds hands up, looking at them closely) My hands. . . I have used these hands, as likely he used his, to make something useful out of nothing. These hands of mine have given new life to that which was dead, an ugly, useless old log became a stool on which a mother could sit with her child. These hands have shaped and molded old pieces of wood until they became utilitarian tools, even works of art, in use and on display in homes throughout the area. With these hands, many times I have cut and hammered. My hands, a hammer and a handful of nails fashion great works.
. . . hammer.
. . . . .and a handful of nails.
They hammer a nail through the hands of the crucified, you know. And the feet!

(throws nails to the floor, loudly, begins pacing)
But what was I to do? Was it not their choice to commit their crimes? I did not place any man upon the cross; it is their offense, not mine, which hangs them there.
And yet, in how many ways we are alike!
We worked the same trade, he and I, but I go on with my craft while he hangs on my cross.
I don’t know who this man was. I have no way of knowing what he did to receive this punishment. But this I know; I can no longer continue my trade.
I will inform the Romans immediately they can find somebody else to make these cruel instruments of death.
I did that which I had contracted for . . . and now. . . ., my work . . .it. . . . is . . . .finished.

actor off stage


MORE IDEAS? See “Creative Object Lessons”

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