How did her purpose in life change after her remarkable conversation with her new-found Lord at Jacob’s well?
The Gospel of John, in chapter 4, doesn’t give the answers. But the passage notes that this woman with a sordid past believed she had found new peace from this stranger who was Christ at the well. She couldn’t keep silent about this encounter; she wanted to share with all the news of the living water for the soul that she needed so desperately. And she did.
In Parker Memorial Baptist Church’s musical drama “Never Thirst Again: The Promise of Easter,” to be presented Sunday at 6:30 p.m., the writers base their story on the supposition the Samaritan woman later followed Christ to Galilee and then to Jerusalem.
The drama is about Jesus’ death and resurrection, told from the viewpoint of the woman of Samaria who came to draw water from the well.
Some commentaries state that she probably became an ardent Christian missionary. Others state that her witness, “Come and see!” to the people in her town was the extent of her new mission. At any rate, the drama holds forth that she became an active follower of The Savior.
“She could have easily been at the crucifixion,” said Sylvia Malone, one of the two narrators in the drama. “And she could have spoken with the women coming back from the empty tomb. The Bible doesn’t say that she was in these places. But, it doesn’t say that she wasn’t.”
Don Gober, minister of music at Parker Memorial, said he is excited about the newly written piece, a work by Christian worship musicians Deborah Craig-Claar, Allan Douglas and Phillip Keveren.
“It is well-written, the music is easy to listen to and fits our abilities so well,” he said. The 40-member choir and a chamber orchestra with 15 players, including a few string players from the Etowah Youth Orchestra, help bring the drama into focus, Gober said. The songs further illustrate what the story is about. Soloists are Lisa Askew, Dianne Adams, Lynn Rice and Louise Sowa.
Two actresses/narrators portray the main Samarian woman, who is called “Anna” in this interpretation. The older one, played by Sylvia Malone, looks back on the events after the resurrection, while the younger one, played by Katie Edwards, plays out the meeting with the man who gives her new hope. After that, she hurries into town to share the news with all who will hear.
Edwards said she is enjoying the challenge of playing such a powerful role.
“This woman was searching for something, but she wasn’t sure what she needed,” she said. “Later, she marveled that her life had been changed during such a routine day in a place that she trudged to every day.”
That change, Edwards believes, is the beauty of the writers’ intent.
“To me, the point is that Christ comes to us wherever we are in life, and he knows just what we need.”
Gober believes this is one of the best public offerings the church has had during his ministry there.
“The message is tremendous,” he said. “And, surprisingly, it’s presented in only 45 minutes.”