by Ron Petrou
I have an announcement that, as I understand it, has never before been made in any Philadelphia newspaper.
God, the Angel Gabriel and the Devil or Satan will this week visit Chestnut Hill. I know this is true because, for a period of time, I will be God.
I know that atheists and skeptics will turn their cold, cynical eyes upward and mutter, “Oh yeah. Tell me another one.”
Believers will think this could possibly be true.
Clear-eyed thinkers, who are liberal and secular, will want more than an announcement. They will want proof. They will think I am speaking metaphorically. Many of these will be Unitarians or Quakers, who tend to think everything in the Bible is metaphorical.
To each his own. But as I have now an absolutely personal relationship with God, being him myself, I stand 100 percent behind the truth of this announcement.
My Angel, Gabriel, and my necessary assistant, the Devil or Satan, Adam and Eve and I, God, will be present on Friday, Dec. 13, 7:30 p.m., at the new Friends Meetinghouse, 20 E. Mermaid Lane.
(Needless to say, this is not an endorsement of Quakerism by me, God. It’s a fine religion if you like peace and quiet and toleration, but as history clearly indicates, not many people do. But at least they are letting me visit their fine new building, which is gracious of them. Not all religions let me in, as you probably know.)
Okay, it’s just a play, “The Paradise Play.” It is funny, entertaining and profound. There will be refreshments. Donations will be requested. The entire presentation should last no more than an hour. Contrary to popular opinion, God does not want to take up too much of your time.
This play is a Medieval drama about me and my associates (called “homeboys” these days), created in the 1840s by Karl Julius Schroer, who later became the friend and teacher of Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925), an Austrian philosopher, social reformer and architect. It was performed for hundreds of years by the people who came to live on the island of Oberufer on the Danube River, close to the frontiers of Austria and Hungary.
This play, along with “The Shepherds Play” and “The Three Kings Play,” was chosen by and performed under the direction of Rudolf Steiner during the early 1900s. They are often performed during the Christmas season in many of the 1000 Waldorf Schools worldwide, the 100 Camphill Communities, serving those in need of special care, and in Christian Community Churches, inspired by Steiner’s philosophy known as Anthroposophy. Thus, “The Paradise Play” is one the most frequently performed Christmas plays in the world.
Amaze your friends and relatives. Autographs, in addition to photographs, will be available after the performance. This will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. You don’t get to meet God face-to-face every day.
Ron Petrou, a long-time resident of Mt. Airy, was a teacher for many years until he was promoted to the position of God, which he insists is even higher than that of assistant principal.