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LEPERS   4'3m0f Jesus cures 10 lepers without going near them

JESUS -- (enters, strolls across stage with arms behind back)

FRED --- (wimpy, follows, looks around, suddenly looks as if 
he's discovered something) Ooo! (runs ahead of Jesus, turns 
holds up hands, stopping Jesus DC) Oh, ah, Jesus?! I think we're 
going in the wrong direction.

JESUS -- No. (points ahead) We're going into this town to spend 
the night.

FRED --- I know you're the rabbi and I'm just a disciple, Jesus. 
But I know this neighborhood. And you don't want to go there. 
(points)

JESUS -- I don't?

FRED --- No. See, this town is on the edge of Samaria.

JESUS -- Yeah, so?

FRED --- So, there's a lot of THOSE people in this town. 
(points)

JESUS -- THOSE people.

FRED --- (looks both ways, shivers) Samaritans. (shivers, looks 
nauseated) 

JESUS -- Samaritans.

FRED --- Makes my skin crawl just to think of them. Anyway, this 
is not a very nice town. We should (points back to entrance, 
tries to push Jesus back) maybe go back to...

JESUS -- (resists, points ahead) What's the matter with this 
town?

FRED --- Well, for one thing, I'm sure they don't have any 
dispensers with those little paper toilet seat covers. And for 
another thing, the bed you sleep in has probably been slept in 
by a (whispers) Samaritan. Doesn't it just give you the creeps?

JESUS -- No.

FRED --- It doesn't?

JESUS -- They all need to hear the Gospel, don't they?

FRED --- The gospel. Yes, of course. (turns, looks ahead) Well, 
then perhaps we should go into town another way. (points 
upstage, begins walking upstage, motioning Jesus to follow)

JESUS -- Why?

FRED --- To avoid that group of men up ahead there. (points 
ahead)

JESUS -- (resists) Why do you want to avoid them?

FRED --- Well, anyone can see they have leprosy.

ED ----- (shouts from offstage) Jesus, Master, have pity on us!

FRED --- Let's just go... (points upstage, begins walking 
upstage, motioning Jesus to follow)

JESUS -- (to Fred) Why? You've cured lepers before.

FRED --- Yeah, maybe onesy, twosy. But never so many. (points 
upstage) Let's just go around to...

JESUS -- (resists) What difference does it make how many of them 
there are?

FRED --- (points ahead, counts lepers) One, two, three, four 
five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten. There are ten of them. My 
personal best is two at a time. And quite frankly the ones I 
cured didn't look that bad. Can you see the open sores on some 
of those men are oozing? (shivers) Makes my skin crawl just to 
think of it. (points upstage) Let's just go around to....

JESUS -- (resists) Wait a minute. (holds hand in air, shouts to 
lepers offstage) Go! Show yourself to the priests.

FRED --- (smiles broadly, pats Jesus on shoulder) Oh, very 
clever! They're going away! I never thought of that! (stops 
smiling, shakes finger at Jesus) But I can tell you right now, 
the priests won't want to have a thing to do with them either. 
And then they'll come right back here again begging to be cured. 
(points ahead) See? What did I tell you? Here comes one now.

ED ----- (enters, arms outstretched, crosses to Jesus) Oh, thank 
you master. Thank you.

FRED --- (backing away) You, keep your distance. (retreats 
behind Jesus) Jesus, do something. He's not keeping his 
distance.

JESUS -- Of course not, he's been cured.

FRED --- He has?! (observes cautiously) How could he be cured?
You didn't even touch him.

ED ----- (kissing Jesus' feet) Oh, thank you, Jesus, son of the 
most high God! 

FRED --- Jesus, how can you stand that?!

JESUS -- Stand what? 

FRED --- Having him touch you like that.

JESUS -- His leprosy has been cured. 

FRED --- Well, okay, but this one is a SAMARITAN. Yuk.

JESUS -- (looks around, shouts) Were not all ten cleansed? Where 
are the other nine?

ED ----- I don't know, master. We were all cured the moment you 
told us to show ourselves to the priests.

FRED --- You were?! Well, I'll be... (still hiding behind Jesus) 
Let me see your hands.

ED ----- (pushes self up to kneeling position, holds out hands) 

FRED --- Well, I'll be...

ED ----- Is it not a trivial matter for the one who spoke the 
universe into existence to cure a few lepers?

FRED --- Trivial. Yes, of course. Frankly, I can understand 
curing the Jews. But this man is a... (disgusted, whispers) 
...a SAMARITAN!

JESUS -- (looks around, shouts) Was no one found to return and 
give praise to God except this foreigner?

ED ----- The scriptures tell us that through the seed of Abraham 
the nations of the world would be blessed.

FRED --- Who does he think he is quoting scripture, as if he 
were a Jew? 

ED ----- We Samaritans can trace our lineage back to Abraham, 
Isaac and Jacob.

FRED --- Yes, but you intermarried with those disgusting pagans. 
It makes my skin crawl just to think of it.

JESUS -- (holds up hand) Rise and go; your faith has made you 
well.

ED ----- (rises, exits backward, bowing several times) Thank 
you, master. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

FRED --- Jesus, couldn't you be just a little more selective 
about who you cure?

JESUS -- (following Ed to exit) In the kingdom of God there is 
neither Greek nor Jew, slave nor free, male nor female.

FRED --- (left standing alone on stage, pondering, then exits) 
Oh, now wait just one minute! You're not actually thinking about 
letting WOMEN into the Kingdom, are you? (shivers) It makes my 
skin crawl just to think of it.


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