FAIRMONT - Every other year, volunteers from Grace Lutheran Church in Fairmont gather on Maundy Thursday to portray "The Last Supper," as depicted in the 15th Century mural by Leonardo da Vinci.
This year, there will be two services, at 6:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. today at Fairmont Opera House.
The timing of this event is significant, since Maundy Thursday is recognized by Christians as the day when Jesus had his last supper with his disciples, one day prior to his crucifixion on the cross.
LAST?MEAL?— “Judas,” played by Matt Nielsen, rehearses his lines in “The Last Supper.” The live portrayal has two showtimes today, at 6:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. at Fairmont Opera House.
The free services are open to the public. Donations will be accepted.
"It's pretty amazing to see when the curtain opens and the da Vinci painting comes to life," said Tina Hilgendorf, who coordinates the event with Dianne Gerhardt and Sue Ruen.
But first, the scene is set with an introduction by da Vinci, played by Robert Walker. He shares a bit of history about the painting, which captures the reaction of Jesus' disciplines when he said to them: "Truly, truly, I say to you, one of you will betray me."
When the curtain opens to the 12 disciples sitting with Jesus, the spotlight focuses one by one on the disciples, as each struggles internally with the fear that he might have been the one to betray his leader.
In addition to the "Last Supper" production, the event will include hymns, a performance by Brothers in Grace, Scripture reading and communion.