When Jesus told his disciples that one of them would betray him, Scripture says they began to question among themselves who might be the one.
That period in history will be brought to life at 8 p.m. March 25 when "The Last Supper Drama" is presented at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, 2716 Broad Ave.
The scene depicts the 12 men and Jesus as they appear in the 15th century painting by Leonardo da Vinci. The action begins with each disciple - from Simon Peter to Judas Iscariot - questioning whether he is the one who will betray his master.
(Courtesy photo) Men from St. Mary and St. Michael Catholic parishes of Hollidaysburg and St. Patrick Parish in Newry present “The Last Supper” drama.
It is the 13th year for the hourlong drama presented by parishioners from St. Mary and St. Michael parishes in Hollidaysburg and St. Patrick Parish in Newry. Most of the men have played the same role each year for the story that has been told in various parishes, mostly in Blair County. It is being repeated for the second time at Our Lady of Lourdes this year.
Bob Muldoon, a parishioner at St. Mary, plays Judas Iscariot, the traitor.
"You don't know that it's me yet," he said of his role on the stage. As Judas, he talks about being made treasurer and no one suspects that he will later point Jesus out to the Roman soldiers.
If you go
What: "The Last Supper"
When: 8 p.m. March 25
Where: Our Lady of Lourdes, 2716 Broad Ave.
Who: Parishioners from St. Mary (Hollidaysburg, St. Michael and St. Patrick parishes.
Muldoon said he never tires of the performance.
"For some of us, it is our own personal Lenten journey," he said. "I get so much out of it."
Bill Padamonsky, co-director of the play, agrees.
"It sets the stage for Holy Week," he said.
Padamonsky, a member of St. Mary Parish, said Muldoon asked him to assist the first year because of his work with Altoona Community Theatre, and he has been part of the production team ever since. Padamonsky's experience with ACT includes acting as well as stage managing responsibilities.
He helps with technical aspects, such as lighting and sound, and gives pointers to the actors, such as how to expresss their emotions.
Padamonsky said he believes the same men agree to do it every year because of the camaraderie and spiritual experience.
During the performance, he sits in the back of the sanctuary and communicates instructions using a walkie-talkie to the technicians in the sacristy.
Even though his mind is on technical aspects of the production, Padamonsky said he finds the disciples' soliloquies to be very touching and moving.
Each disciple's character is developed despite the fact that the Bible provides more background on some than others.
All the men speak for about the same amount of time, reflecting on how they came to know Jesus and their relationship with him.
They are puzzled and express bewilderment, Muldoon said
In addition to the disciples, a narrator sets the scene at the beginning and concludes the production.
Jesus is present throughout "The Last Supper Drama," but never says a word.