James the Lesser:
Kim & Kent Hosier
|Last Supper Drama Group of Fort Wayne|
|The Masters Men Every Lenten season this group of men witnesses through their role as one of Jesus's followers.The 40 days of intropection for each of us can be life changing. 2014 will be our 45th season. We hope to continue for generations to come. 82 men have sat at our table,82 lives and families have been touch by this ministry not to mention the thousands who have come to see the drama. We are in awe how Jesus can take these ordinary men and witness to the world around us.|
The current cast was asked,"Why do you do the show." Here are some of the responses
"I did it when I was younger,it's been kind of part of the family.I now have my next generation involved,and proved as a lay person that you don't have to be rich famous or anything special to be a normal man and have believed of the eternal life that follows.I am just an ordinary fisherman like anyone of you."
"I have a desire to serve our Lord,and be a minister! This is one small way that I can serve and fulfill that calling. I get blessed when I see others being blessed by the experience."
"Because I have always been a part of it since before I was at the table,and I made friends with some good people. Dad was always a part of it,so I wanted to be a part of it."
"When a person knows they are called by God,there are limited venues in this world obsessed with political correctness where a person can deliver a powerful message."
"My dad was part of it, given the opportunity to fill his spot sounded amazing. From there the people are what keep me there."
" It is what I consider my "Lent" each year.I have made several good friends with the group and like to be around them each year.I think the mission is important, and I see how much the audience's get from it each time. I am a performer and playing the part is fun and rewarding."
"Proverbs 27:17, As iron sharpens iron,so one man sharpens another."
" His message is too important to forget at Easter."
"The fellowship of the people I have known from doing this have become my second family. Doing this is an honor because it sends you back to a place in time where you can share the message of Christ and help others understand what happened that night also !! I think it is great the way God works as he did back when he was living he took men from different walks of life to deliver his message just as he has done with the 12 of us. Because of what he has done for me these last few years he has made my faith in God become so much stronger and deeper. Blessed are those who believe and yet have not seen"
|How it all began |
Ernest K. Emurian's Living Last Supper
The drama had its premier presentation in Portsmouth, Virginia, on Palm Sunday evening, 1954. Then, in July 1969, The Last Supper was presented for 6,000 people in the Music Hall of Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana, as the closing worship service of the National Quadrennial Conference of Methodist Men. Since its publication, the play has been presented by many different groups in all sections of the nation, and has been a source of inspiration to the many thousands who have seen it in person as well as over numerous television stations during Holy Week.
Two members of Simpson United Methodist Church in Fort Wayne,IN attended the National Methodist Men’s Conference at Purdue University in 1969. Cy Harader and Milo Habegger were in Elliott hall when the author and his group presented the drama for the conference. Cy and Milo came home and began gathering together the group to do a single performance at Simpson on Palm Sunday, 1970. The original thirteen men were Harold Smith, Bob Lawburgh, Darrell Cash, Bill Cartwright, Milo Habegger, Floyd Gantz, Roy Kern, Jim Trulock, Floyd Swathwood, Richard Crick, Doyle Shirk, John Leath and Denver Druesedow. The men paid for their own material for robes and stools and their wives made the robes. Cy was the orginal director and his son-in-law, Larry Ewing, who was then a member of Simpson, was the technical director. Blanche Hutto was the original art consultant. She also furnished much of the tableware, most of which is still in use. She donated plates that she had brought back from a recent trip to Isreal. Bill Cartwright painted the canvas flats, the table cloth, and did other art work. Much credit must be extended to the support group for this drama. It would be impossible to carry on the tradition without all those who work behind the scenes. The group usually travels with about thirty-five people, all who contribute their time, talent, and resources without any personal monetary return. The families of those involved became involved themselves. There have been many young people who have traveled with the group only to do stage hand work and be a part of the “drama family”. The group now has some third generation members. We who are a part of the group feel that we are stewards of a ministry of God in the name of Jesus Christ. We willingly participate and share our witness with those who attend the presentations. We feel that the program contributes much to our personal spiritual growth. We feel fortunate to be a part of the ministry. We have witnessed to thousands of people in the name of Jesus Christ.
|2016 Season Starts as a mission|
The Rescue mission hosted our first show this year. It was an opportunity to share our message with the men in our community looking for hope and help. Thanks to First Wayne St. for letting us use their facility, and to Pastor Chris and Pastor Shane for helping make the show a meaningful outreach for our group. It was a good start to another year of ministry. Another year of helping people find the reason for lent, examine yourself and your relationship with God. I am still in awe how God can take thirteen ordinary men and their families, and use them to spread his word. Hope to see you at a show. I thought a few people should be recognized for their efforts to our drama.
Bill Cartwright 141 shows (deceased)
Cal Armstrong 128 shows as Thomas
Ernie Crowder 129 shows
Rick Ensley 128 shows
Al Bohnstedt 121 shows
Brian Smith 122 shows as Andrew (His Wife Deb has been in the make up room as a vital part as well)
Jack Brandon 107 shows.
Donna Conklin has run the spotlight for over 20 years
Bill Mardin is our super sub filling in at the drop of a hat for any reason I need him.Thanks to all for your dedication to this ministry.
We have four Churches scheduled for the 2017 Lenten season and are seeking more host Churches please contact us so we can get you on the scedule for next year or even 2018 if you like. We do not charge a fee but ask for 75% of offering and that you feed aprox. 28 people. call for details.
The presentation lasts about an hour with each disciple giving a solilique of his life with jesus leading up to the moment at the Passover Supper when Jesus tells them that "one of you will betray me." It is a thought provoking look at what might have been going through the minds of each of the men who were the closest disciples of Jesus. The host church provides a musical interlude between every other speaker as the "painting" is brought to life. We provide the music selection ahead of time to allow rehearsals. The host church provides a meal and a freewill or love offering is collected to defray expenses (makeup, back drop, spot light bulbs etc.), afterwhich the balance is invested in a scholarship fund and returned to local christian charities or families in need.
The intent of the presentation is to challenge everyone in the audience to examine their own relationship with our Lord Jesus. As each of the disciples ponder "Is it I?" we pray that you also consider those thoughts.
|Twenty Year Participants|
20 Year members include
Bill Cartwright (charter member - 32 years)
Brian and Debby Smith (25)
Ernie Crowder (27)
Larry Ewing (26)
Andy Ewing (Andy might have been on the “set” before he learned to walk - 24 yrs)
Cal Armstrong (23 years)
Jack Brandon (22 yrs)
Francis Bader and Al and Janis Bohnstedt (all at 21 yrs). Bruce,Donna,Bart and Zach Conklin 20years
| Schedule a performance at your Church|
Contact us for scheduling and information. Rick Ensley firstname.lastname@example.org 260 348-3739
|LAST SUPPER DRAMA GROUP OF FORT WAYNE|
Ft Wayne, IN