Published September 1, 2005
Father Richard HoLung and a Caribbean cast will perform an epic musical drama about the life of Jesus Christ entitled “Jesus 2000” at Blessed Trinity High School Theater in Roswell Sept. 30 and Oct. 1-2.
Prepared for the millennial birthday of the Savior of the world, “Jesus 2000” is a joyous and spectacular celebration of the 2000th birthday of Jesus Christ, presented through an interplay of music, dance, costume and visual effects.
All proceeds will benefit the work of the Missionaries of the Poor, the religious order established by Father HoLung in Kingston, Jamaica, which serves the poorest of the poor in Jamaica, Haiti, India, Uganda and the Philippines.
The cast, “Father HoLung & Friends,” gives praise and glory to the Father for the redemption of the world through His Son, Jesus. It is an act of worship and a theatrical experience that has touched the lives of many and amazed them with the sheer beauty and magnitude of the production. More than 200,000 people in the Caribbean, the United States and Canada have seen the show.
Father HoLung’s music ministry began in 1967 when he started writing Jamaica liturgical songs for children. The songs were soon being used in churches and attracted several gifted singers and musicians who helped bring the music to new levels. Although he has no theoretical knowledge of music, has had no formal music training and can play no instrument, the music began to pour through Father HoLung from that time onward, coming to him at night or in meditation.
By 1981 Father HoLung & Friends had produced several albums that brought them greater recognition and at times took them on tour in North America and the Caribbean as a way of joyous evangelizing and of assisting the work of the Missionaries of the Poor.
In 1999, with the millennium approaching, Father HoLung decided to give the Lord a huge birthday celebration. He set his sights on the National Arena in Jamaica. He summoned every acquaintance possible: painters, carpenters, special effects people, singers, dancers and orchestras. The result was “Jesus 2000,” featuring a cast of 50 singers and dancers accompanied by a 26-piece philharmonic orchestra. It was a hit, winning seven awards in Jamaica, including best lighting design, best set design, best costumes, best original score, best choreography, best musical and best production.
In describing this accomplishment, Father HoLung said, “It is not to be attributed to man but ‘to God whose power now at work in us can do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine—to Him be the glory in Christ Jesus’ (Eph 3:20).”
He said, “ We had no idea what level of production we were in for. But on the night of the show, our breath was taken away and the same happened to our audience. God worked on the production. He was in it, and He masterminded it.”
Jamaican theater critic Cecilia Legister wrote, “God himself is an artist, with Creation as His masterpiece, so it would only please Him to see how artistically and marvelously the creation story was told with creatively designed costumes, superb music and dance and an expert crop of actors and singers … Do angels sing reggae? I now believe so, and they sound very good too. ‘Wake Up Mary’ must have been the reggae song the angel Gabriel sang on the occasion of this visitation to the Virgin Mary to tell her the blessed news … Truly I am convinced that Christ himself came down and assisted Father Richard HoLung with the production of ‘Jesus 2000.’ The superb harmonies of the singers and musicians must have pleased the Master as He witnessed the production dedicated to Him.”
“Jesus 2000” will be performed on Friday, Sept. 30, at 7:30 p.m., on Saturday, Oct. 1, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. and on Sunday, Oct. 2, at 3 p.m. at Blessed Trinity High School Theater in Roswell. All proceeds will benefit the Missionaries of the Poor. Tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for students. The shows will likely be sold out so people are encouraged to obtain tickets early.
Tickets can be purchased by calling the Atlanta Jesus 2000 office at (404) 438-6257 or online at www.missionariesofthepoor.org.