GERMANY, (WKRG) — As we’ve reported, our Drexel Gilbert has had the opportunity to travel overseas, checking out travel conditions in the Coronavirus era. One of her stops took her to a very small, but very famous, site in Germany where a 400-year-old promise is still being kept. That got her to thinking about the importance of keeping our own. And that is the topic of this week’s Minute With Drexel.
Drexel: Hey, y’all! Today, I am coming to you from a very special place in Europe. I am in Oberammergau, Germany. Isn’t it pretty? I wanted you to see a little bit of the village before I talk about what’s on my mind today. The village is beautiful but that’s not why I think it’s one of the most special places in Europe. That reason is right behind me. It’s the theater where every ten years, the Passion Play has been performed. You see in 1633, a plague known as Black Death was sweeping through northern Europe and was decimating villages. It made its way to Oberammergau and people started dying. The people of the village came together and prayed and said, ‘God, if you will spare our village from further death, we promise that every ten years, we will tell the story of the passion of the Christ, of the last days of Christ’s life on Earth, through performance.’
And, so that has, almost without exception. There have been four cancellations or delays through the years due to wars, the Spanish Flu, and last year’s coronavirus pandemic. The good news is, they have been able to reschedule the Passion Play performance for next year.
I had the opportunity to interview the actor who portrays Jesus and you know what stood out to me about that is when he talked about the commitment of this village, of the people, to honor the promise that was made 400+ years ago.
I got to thinking about this and said, “Drexel, are you a good promise keeper?” Sometimes! Sometimes, not so much. These people have been keeping a promise for over 400 years. I sometimes have trouble keeping a promise for 40 minutes! But you know what? After visiting this village, after meeting the people, after interviewing the actor who portrays Jesus (and you’ll see some of that interview in an upcoming Minute with Drexel) I have decided I am going to be better about making promises, about keeping promises, about remembering and about spreading the good news. Maybe we can all focus on that this week. What do you think?
The Passion Play will be performed in Oberammergau, Germany from May 14 through October 2, in 2022. It literally takes the entire village to put on this world-famous play.