Wednesday, October 24, 2012

"The Telltale Talent" Film

Well, the fine folks at Rentz Baptist Church in Rentz, GA have been at it again! You may recall the first film they made, "The Soul Hunt," based on my skit script "Assignment: Witness!" The blog entry about it can be read here, and you can view the film as well. This year, for their big wild game dinner event, they have filmed and produced another of my scripts, this time "The Telltale Talent." (Read the script for it here, it is great to perform in your own church, and raise awareness of the need for volunteers.)

Director Steve Knight and the members of the men's hunting fellowship, as well as others at the church, have gone all out and created a 20 minute movie of the script, going so far as to film at night in the town's local cemetery for the climactic scene! You may view the film below; but if you would like to show it or "The Soul Hunt" as your church, contact me for a copy on DVD.

Watch The Telltale Talent on GodTube.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Halloween Alternative Event Skits

Halloween... what's a Christian to do with it?

Some few, remembering their own innocent childhood fun, celebrate it with their kids, creating new memories.

But generally believers fall into one of two camps. Either they ignore it, wishing it would go away, or they severely lambast it and condemn those that paticipate in it in any way. Neither reaction is particularly effective for reaching people with the gospel message during the season. As another, more positive option, many churches have "Fall Festivals," "Hallelujah Nights," "Harvest Parties," and so on, as Halloween Alternative events. Many parents, Christian or not, are looking for safe places to take their kids on Halloween to avoid the dangers of trick-or-treating, and the local church harvest festival event is often the place they go, or might consider taking their kids to.

The goal is, to make the event fun and a part of the October theme, without going too far one way or the other. One extreme is to ignore the Halloween season completely and make the event just a fair-oriented event or special church service. That's not too attractive to those wanting only a safer, but still fun, place to go. On the other side of the fence is the church that has a Haunted House or Trail or even a "Hell House." Those aren't attractive to those looking for a less scary atmosphere.

The best and most well-attended events are those that make the kids feel that they aren't missing out on Halloween, but are without the usual horror and occult overtones. Pumpkins, fall leaves, and other decorations traditionally associated with fall and harvest, will help make the event fit in with the season and make it fun. Skits and drama can be the part of the event that contain the "gospel outreach" elements that are so important.
Looking for "anti-Halloween" skits to convince people of how bad it is?

Sorry, you won't find them here. Those kinds of skits turn off the very people you want to reach. The skits here are perfect for Ocotober events, and not only fit it nicely, but come with a strong Biblical message.

These are written in such a way that the spookiness and scariness are not treated as foreign themes, but are recognized and used as a powerful and integral part of the method of sharing a positive message.

Here's an email from a script user who had this to say...

Sometime a week or two before Halloween, the Rabun Creek Baptist Church will be doing your script "Tricks or Treats: Scare vs Share."I think it will be a big help with our advertising for volunteers for "Trunk or Treat" this year, hosted by our church. Hopefully, this will entice more of our church people who are against it to actually support it and help by decorating a trunk! Last year was our first year doing trunk or treat and we had over 300 kids stop in! Talk about an outreach opportunity! Thank you!

-Andrea Creasy
Gray Court, SC

And here's another one...

The Claridon Christian Fellowship Church will be performing your script, "Tricks or Treats: Scare vs Share" on Friday, October 26.

This skit is perfect for our annual Harvest Festival. Sure beats hiring expensive entertainment as we have in the past. It's very funny and cleverly written. I like the fact that your scripts address Halloween head-on by using it to bring a postive message. Thank you for putting your work out there and making it free!

God Bless!
-Jennifer Perry,
Claridon, OH

Here are some of the scripts that would be perfect for a Fall Festival:
"A Midnight Dreary"  
No lines to learn! All the action in this short 19-minute play is performed to the narration (with music and effects) on the Soundtrack CD. A man is spending a stormy night at home by himself. When he thinks that an escaped convict is lurking outside, he forgets the Bible lesson on fear he was studying, and panics. A comedy of terrors results, as circumstances conspire to bring him to the brink of a nervous breakdown. Perfect for Fall Festivals and Halloween Alternative events!

In "The Telltale Talent," the main character is watching an old Frankenstein movie on TV when he falls asleep and has a dream sent by God, and part of the events unfold in a creepy graveyard! An angel takes him to the Cemetery of Buried Talents, where he learns about the effects of neglecting to use one's God-given talents for His Kingdom. It ends up with a powerful message about our personal responsibility to work for the Lord using the tools He has given us. One of the most popular skits here for Halloween alternative events or October services!

In "Attack of the Monster Tongue," the spirit of gossip is personified as a rampaging creature straight from an old 50's sci-fi horror flick. A tale is told around town about the pastor of a church, growing and mutating as it spreads. Finally, the horror is stopped as the source is confronted, and the Monster Tongue is silenced by the Word of God!
In "The Creature In The Closet," a parable about the dangers of harboring a grudge, a man finds that hiding a grudge monster in his closet is a hazardous thing to do. About the harmful effects of unforgiveness, this skit is funny, with a hair-raising confrontation that ends in a touching reconciliation.

In "Tricks or Treats" the question of how to use Halloween as a witnessing opportunity is addressed in a light way, and it takes place on Halloween night in the script. It's Scare vs Share as a man and wife disagree about the way to greet the kids, with a hapless little old lady from next door as the victim of the conflict!

"Assignment: Hindrance" portrays the trials and triumphs experienced by two demons who have been given the job of tripping up Christians. What makes them happy, and what makes them upset, reveals the ways that Christians either make their job easier or more difficult.

"The Crate Escape!" is a mini-play about 15-20 minutes long that demonstrates the traps that the devil can ensnare people with. A helpless fellow that fell for one learns, after seeing the futility of various human efforts, how that the only freedom we can have is through the liberating power of the Word of God. Go to this page to see it performed by a youth group who did it up right! It will inspire you to do it too.

"In The Shadow Of Death," the main character is followed by death, personified in the image of the Grim Reaper, and seeks an escape by going to various people for help. A Christian finally gives him the good news about how to take the sting out of death. This skit is particularly good for October, as you can see from the images below, taken during a performance by the 7-9 grade Sunday School class at Charity Baptist Church in Dayton, Ohio.

Each of these skit scripts use an element of fear to make strong statements about the overcoming power available through Jesus Christ. Showing that the Spirit He has given us, which is not a Spirit of fear, can overcome things in this life that are scary, is a worthy goal. Being afraid of even touching on scary situations in your skits, shows that fear itself has already conquered you in your desire to witness effectively.

Want something different? Go to our Script Page to see everything we have to offer!

Any of these scripts would add greatly to your Halloween Alternative event with just the right amount of seasonal spookiness and spiritual truth. Have a special Drama night, with several of these skits done back to back or as part of an overall program. Or do one of them in between the events and songs in your concert. Your attendees will enjoy it and go home with the message lingering in their minds and hearts long afterward.

How To Use The Skits

"Great," you say. "I'm convinced. But I need a longer play than the 8-10 minute scripts here."

No problem! Just do several of them! Two or even three of them, separated by a song, followed by a short message from the pastor or youth pastor, would make a whole program, in a "variety show" format. Your emcee or host can even be a "Rod Serling" type of character, with each skit presented as a vignette on a theme that he presents. The overall program could be called "The Spiritual Zone," using music from the "Twilight Zone" TV show. Sounds like fun, doesn't it?