CROSS-CANADA TOUR - How does someone survive 14 years of torture, imprisonment and starvation? And how do they emerge from that smiling? Voice of the Martyrs Canada (VOMC) is sponsoring a national tour of a hit stage play that enacts incredible true stories of best-selling author Richard Wurmbrand, and addressing Christian persecution around the world today. This immersive experience expresses two parts of the 40-year-old mandate of VOMC: inspiring and awakening Canadians on ways to assist Christian victims of persecution globally. Often met with standing ovations, the stage play brings to life the ministry’s late founder, Richard Wurmbrand (author of Tortured For Christ), to tell his own transcendent tale from a transformative prison cell.
Award-winning playwright Dennis Hassell confesses, “In researching Richard Wurmbrand’s story, I was surprised by joy. I discovered a man overflowing with hope, love- and even humour. Amid the suffering, he found the supernatural. He encountered Christ in ways more tangible than we normally find in our comfortable churches.” Hassell blurts, “Richard never wanted us to feel sorry for him; he felt sorry for us!” Artist Hassell also performs the role of Wurmbrand, in collaboration with director Tom Carson, a triple Dora Award nominee. Hassell and Carson have partnered on nationally touring hit shows like The Big Picture, 2000 Candles, The Missionary, and The Sacred Diary of Adrian Plass. They are thrilled to be collaborating with Emmy and Gemini award-winning musical composer Tom Szczesniak. Videography and state-of-the-art lighting also unite in bringing audiences into the story. As the character of The Prisoner exults, “I don’t bring horror, but hope!” The production was four years in the making. “The play is affirming and informing, but also challenging,” observes VOMC’s CEO Doug McKenzie. “It poses a powerful question in the here and now: would we be willing to suffer for Christ, as others are doing in so many countries today?”
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