. DRAMA EVANGELISMContents of good Christian drama This is just about the hardest question to answer in the world of Christian drama. It is not make any easier by the fact that different religions and beliefs have different perspectives and approach to it. Nevertheless, there are things that are true, regardless of the tongues, tribe or nations. Let me start by looking at the nature and purpose of drama.Drama is theatre. This is where most Christian drama ministries/group go wrong. Drama is not sermon. However, this does not mean it can not contain a message. But it does affect the way the message is passed across to the audience.So what do I mean by “Drama is theatre”? Drama is dramatic; it portrays the human condition such that it identifies with what is going on. Let me also say that drama is all about the human condition, with it’s failure, triumphs, weakness, glories, tragic time and it’s hilarity. This is why the Bible is so dramatic in nature that it reveals the human condition in all its starkness God is very dramatic: Consider the burning bush, the opening of the Red Sea, the Pillar of Fire, the Holy Spirit as a flame, the Crucifixion of Jesus. How much more, dramatic can one get? God is not a dramatist just for the sake of effect. What he does is to get our attention, so as to prepare us for the message that follows in order to make the message more understood. Sometimes that message is very subtle (Like the word to Elijah in the quiet breath of wind). Sometime a panorama that fills the skies (as did the angel at the birth of Jesus), sometimes it’s very funny (as was the behavious of Balaam’s ass or in the parable of the log of wood in the eye), sometimes it calls for a great sacrifice (as with Hosea’s marriage to a woman he knew would go and prostitute herself). Most of the messages were not particularly clear at that time (that is, many of Jesus parables) it was only after they were understood.What can we apply to our drama from this?1. Work on people’s emotions.2. Explore the full breadth of the human condition.3. Let your audience see the reality in what you are dramatizing, making use of costumes, make-ups and properties on stage or set.4. Don’t try to resolve the issue every time; do not strive for neat endings.5. Consider different ways of approaching the subject; don’t always go head on.6. You are not on stage or set to preach a sermon rather, you are there to minister through drama.7. Don‘t forget to find out whether you are reaching out to the audience i.e. getting feedbacks. Listen with open ears when acting and don’t be afraid to let our preconception be challenged.8. Note: The essence of drama is tension. It can be comic tension or dramatic tension. You could almost say that without tension, there is no drama, and sadly most Christian drama messages suffers from this. In other-words characters are wooden, the situation has little relevance to everyday life outside the church, the dialogue is filled with Christian jargons, there is no art, and no sense of real encounter.Because of this, Christians drama has ruined it’s reputation over the years. Hence, it is not taken seriously by the circular world of theatre.
With this kind of shabby preparations in the Christian drama ministries, tangible growth which will have real impact on churches worldwide will be delayed. There’s a desperate need for trained individuals who have visions for what drama should be like in the church. We need people who are willing to invest quality time and energy into producing powerful life transforming drama messages.In addition to the above listed factors that makes a good Christian drama message, the following points are very essential.9. A good drama message should be well-written. If you want to learn more about this, we have some good Christian drama tutorials and colleges around. Also there are helpful books in libraries written by well-known playwright which you can learn from.10. A good drama message is well acted and well produced. If your church drama group or ministry lack skills in this area then go for training. Disciples institute of christian Drama will effectively help to bring out the potentials in you for God’s use.11. A good drama message aims for excellence.A good Christian drama message should not aim at enter