Testament of a Naked Man
A Recitation of the Gospel of Mark
Each year on Palm Sunday, the week before Easter, our Rector Angus Stuart has recited "The Passion Gospel." This is the story of the arrest, trial and crucifixion of Jesus as related in one or other of the three synoptic gospels, Matthew, Mark or Luke, depending on which one is allocated that year. After Easter 2009, having recited the Passion Gospel from Mark, he didn't want to just forget it and even wondered if he could memorize the rest of the Gospel according to Mark as well. After all, he had heard that it had been done before, though in the traditional King James Version rather than the contemporary New Revised Standard Version that we use each week in Church.
So he began to learn it, adding a few verses each day. By Easter 2010 he had sufficiently memorized the text such that he was able to offer a recitation of chapters one through thirteen on Maundy Thursday after the evening service, leading in to the all night prayer vigil. This is the gospel story right up to but not including the passion narrative. This was by way of a foretaste, or dress rehearsal, for a presentation of the entire gospel from start to finish.
The first presentation took place on October 16th 2010 at St. Francis-in-the-Wood. And since then the naked man has been on tour around several parishes in the Diocese of New Westminster and further afield! You can read Angus' reflections on the Testament of a Naked Man on this site.
Future performances will be listed here. Tickets are available from each venue, please contact them to find out the costs and how to order them.
Proceeds from the Testament of a Naked Man will support a variety of causes including the extraordinary work of the Guatemala Mission under Rev. Emilie Smith at the Peace House in Santa Cruz delle Quiche and the Thomas Merton Society of Canada.