The Secret Rebellion
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A young, rightful queen returns from exile to her homeland. Her mission is to reclaim her country from the grip of an oppressive foreign occupation. To achieve her goal, she must find a king.

Her quest leads to a charismatic and gifted man who possesses the ability to help her lead a nation to freedom. But the mission comes at a cost greater than anyone can predict, and the misunderstood legacy of their secret rebellion will endure for thousands of years. A failed political movement that gave birth to a new religion.


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About the author

With his first release, Martin Baggen's passion for history is given a "what if?" twist.

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Additional Information

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Published on
Oct 6, 2013
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Drama / Religious & Liturgical
History / General
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In today's "hurry-up" world, it seems we rarely take the time to think of other people and "walk a mile in the other man's shoes." If we did, what would we see? They Worshiped Him revisits the nativity story from the perspective of the people who were actually there. In this dramatic retelling, we glimpse the innermost thoughts and feelings of some of the very common people whose lives were forever changed by a most extraordinary event. What did the shepherds feel? What did others think of them? Were they perceived as "eccentric"? And what about the wise men who followed the star? Did they have an entire entourage, or did people treat them like three dottering old men? And what about Mary and Joseph; how did this unusual pregnancy affect them? They Worshiped Him answers many of these questions while reminding us of the biblical characters' humanity.

The singing of favorite seasonal carols is woven into the drama, encouraging audience participation. And it's an adaptable work that can be staged as elaborately or simply as you wish. While there are speaking parts for 12 angels, 5 animals, 6 shepherds, 3 magi, the innkeeper, Mary, Joseph, and a narrator, roles can easily be combined for use with any size congregation. Staging instructions are included.

Far too many plays being marketed to churches today are not well written, place unreasonable requirements on the space and talent available in the average local church, and contain biblically inaccurate statements and characterizations. Gail Keffer's play They Worshiped Him doesn't present any of those problems. It is written in a flexible manner that makes it easy to adapt to a worship service, dinner theater, or a feature-length play for an annual Christmas production. It also does a magnificent job of presenting a biblically accurate version of the nativity story that can be heard, understood, and remembered by all of God's children.... We used this play two years ago, and people are still talking about it. One comment I heard was that the play "made Mary seem like a real person and not a stained-glass Madonna who's out of touch with the realities people like us face."
Kari Turner McClellan
Senior Pastor, First Presbyterian Church
Levittown, Pennsylvania

Gail K. Keffer is a graduate of Slippery Rock University (B.S. and M.Ed.). An active member of Clen-Moore Presbyterian Church in New Castle, Pennsylvania, Keffer is a former schoolteacher who has run a needlework design business and is currently the proprietor of The Amish Peddler, a business specializing in the sale of fine Amish-made furniture.

Sol Harkens has it all. A new best seller, a gorgeous model girlfriend, immense success. He’s the Mohammad Ali of outspoken atheist celebrities. But not everything is perfect in Sol Harkens’ life. After losing his son to cancer he dedicated himself to denying God and parlayed his attacks on Christianity into a lucrative business. But Sol is empty inside. His party lifestyle has isolated him from his ex-wife, Katy, and their two sons. He resents their unrelenting faith and Katy’s prayers for his soul.


When Sol’s self-destructive habits end in a serious car crash, he wakes up to learn he was clinically dead for four minutes. Being dead isn’t what bothers him. It’s the voice. Five simple words that refuse to let him go: “Daddy, let there be light.”


Praise for Let There Be Light

This story has so many twists and turns, it’s a rollercoaster! Joyful, tearful, but ultimately, hopeful...Let there be light, indeed!


In the book version of Let There Be Light, Dan was not as kind to my character as he could have been.

~ KEVIN SORBO--Actor, Director, Author

Dan Gordon has not written your usual faith film novelization. It is funny, hip, heartbreaking, and redemptive, and a thoroughly great and entertaining read.

~ STEVEN PRESSFIELD--Author of The Legend of Bagger Vance

Let There Be Light is a movie with a heart. Moving beyond entertainment to realistic life issues, it brings light to our darkened world through a story that finds wholeness in the midst of our most pressing concerns.

~ JAMES KNAGGS--Retired Commissioner of The Salvation Army

Let There Be Light is a story of eternal hope…how it meets and transforms us in the midst of our most profound pain and suffering. I highly recommend it!

~ PASTOR KEN FOREMAN--Cathedral of Faith


A Jesuit priest, a New York play, and questions as profound as they come . . .
A few years after being called to the priesthood, Father James Martin was startled to get a very different kind of call one evening in 2004: a phone call from actor Sam Rockwell. Rockwell had been cast for the part of Judas Iscariot in an Off-Broadway play, The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, where Judas was on trial for his crime of betraying Jesus. Would Martin be willing to serve as a theological consultant for the play? Martin gladly obliged, and within weeks playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis, director Philip Seymour Hoffman, and members of the cast began to dialogue with Martin about a host of spiritual issues that the play evoked: Can we believe the Bible? What was Jesus' mission? What is sin? Does hell exist? Is anyone beyond God's forgiveness?
A Jesuit Off-Broadway recounts Martin's six months with the LAByrinth Theater Company and his education in the making of a play, from the writing of the script to the cast party on closing night. At the same time, the occasionally profane and routinely free-spirited creative team and actors learned from Martin key insights into Christian faith and theology, while often revealing a profoundly spiritual side to their lives. By the time the final curtain fell, Martin and the cast had gleaned important and at times surprising lessons from each other as they realized how the sacred and the secular aren't always that far apart . . . and how, in the end, questions tell us more than answers ever do.
What happens when theater and theology share the stage?
Discover the answer in this thought-provoking memoir by Christopher Award–winning author and Jesuit priest James Martin. Take a front-row seat to Father Martin's six-month experience as a theological consultant for the New York theater production of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot, directed by Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, and starring Sam Rockwell and Eric Bogosian. While Martin thoughtfully responds to the deeply spiritual and soul-searching questions posed to him by the creative team and actors—questions that many of us ponder at one time or another in our lives—he learns about the world of professional theater and all that is required to put on a successful play.
Join Father Martin as he takes this fascinating foray into the acting arena . . . and offers answers to some of life's biggest questions.
"A vivid lesson in how the Christian life can be lived in the midst of the real world."
Lawrence S. Cunningham
John A. O'Brien Professor of Theology
University of Notre Dame
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