Wednesday, January 30, 2013

In His Steps: The Movie


I play the role of John Gray, the owner of the White Cross Kitchen, in the film In His Steps.

It premiered in Montrose, Colorado, on December 7 and is available on DVD and digital download

The screenplay is written by Zack Lawrence, who was on the team of Indescribable. He also directed.

This was my sixth film with Rebekah Cook (Alone Yet Not Alone, Indescribable, Screenwriters, Christmas Grace, Beyond the Mask). Also performing in the film is Sam Carr, who is an alumnus of The MasterWorks Festival and will be on our performing arts team in Sochi, Russia, during the Winter Olympics, Stacey Bradshaw, who performed with me in Alone Yet Not Alone and The Screenwriters and on Polycarp, and Tim Kaiser, who performed with me in Christmas Grace.




Sunday, January 27, 2013

Being Meek or Grabbing What You Want?

Pastor Joyce Swingle continued the Living the Life: Choices series, preaching on Matthew 5:5

Opening by Pastor Linda Warren. Music and testimony by Chris C. Communion by Rev. Art Alexander, Superintendent of the Metro New York District of the Church of the Nazarene. Closing scripture, I Kings 19:11-12, and prayer by Pastor Randy Solomon.



This service is available for download free on iTunes, where you can also subscribe to our podcast. Search for "Westchester Chapel" on the iTunes Store.

Here's our worship set...
WCCC Worship 1/27/13 by RichS on Grooveshark
 Grooveshark is a third party source. If you listen on their website you will encounter advertisements, none of which are vetted or endorsed by Westchester Chapel. If there are ads that you find offensive we encourage you to click the "Report Ad" link below the ad.

 Photo courtesy of NicolettiPhoto.com.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Pietrina Mauceri

Patricia Mauceri, who has been on the MasterWorks faculty since 2005 reported that her mother has gone to be with the Lord.
My Mom went home to the Lord Dec. 28th after battling pulmonary fibrosis for some time. She had expressed her desire not to die at Christmas because she did not want her children burdened with that remembrance every year when we should be focused on the joy of our Savior's birth. Although a practicing Catholic for most of her life, she understood in the last years that Jesus was her Savior and she accepted Him. The Lord heard her prayer and after a joyful Christmas with many family, friends and extended family dropping by her bedside...she would ask, "Is Christmas over?" the next day: "What's today's date?" and finally on Dec. 28th she was ready to leave. She had been expressing how she was ready to go home to Jesus and she did not fear. She thanked God for a wonderful life, family and children and said she was not angry for her ailment...saying, we must all die of something...

Until the end, she was still offering to sew hems on her nurses pants, being a human GPS for everyone needing directions and re-telling family stories from the past, from her childhood years to funny recent events. She reminded us she had started to write her memoirs and left a note with her will for her 3 children. Her life was not perfect, but she touched many deeply. She was sent off with her former choir members singing gloriously at her home church...and I just know she is dancing, singing, designing and sewing new heavenly robes for the Lord's special angels and heavenly hosts!!  

Farewell, dear Mother...now the Lord will help us to make our way...without you.
Feel free to leave prayers and condolences for the family below. 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Greatest Super Hero is Jesus


Westchester Chapel's Treasure Seekers (ages 5-10) meet the third Sunday of every month.

In this webisode Trevor the Treasure Seeker introduces Sharky Man, who joins Pastor Rachel in exploring Revelation 19:11-16 and explaining to the children that the greatest super hero is Jesus, who fights for us in all circumstances.

Join Trevor the Treasure Seeker and his friends once a month as they seek the Greatest Treasure Ever!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Treasure Seekers introduces Sharkman

Join Trevor the Treasure Seeker and his friends on the third Sunday of every month, and seek the Greatest Treasure Ever in our adventure for children ages 5 to 10.

The adventures take place at Westchester Chapel, which meets at the Crowne Plaza, 66 Hale Ave., White Plains, NY 10601 at 11 a.m.



This Sunday Sharkman promises to make an appearance.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Salvation in the Air

On Sunday, Joyce and I shared about how we prayed with the former manager of a mega rock band on our flight home from Denver. As we speak Caroline Chehade plays "Ciaccona" (also known by its French name, "Chaconne") by J.S. Bach, from his Partita 2 in D Minor. They story of the musician at L'Enfant Plaza is from the Washington Post.

It's followed by Pastor Jim Warren's sermon: "Choices: Poor in Spirit or Self-Reliant". He introduces the Sermon on the Mount, the Beattitudes and preaches on Matthew 5:3.

Pastor Jim mentions the death of his mother, Fran Warren. Her memorial page is WestchesterChapel.org/FranWarren.



This service is available for download free on iTunes, where you can also subscribe to our podcast. Search for "Westchester Chapel" on the iTunes Store.

WCCC Worship 1/13/13 by RichS on Grooveshark

Grooveshark is a third party source. If you listen on their website you will encounter advertisements, none of which are vetted or endorsed by Westchester Chapel. If there are ads that you find offensive we encourage you to click the "Report Ad" link below the ad.

So how BIG was that 'Monster Prominence'? 
Photo, mentioned in Pastor Jim's sermon, courtesy of NASA.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Actors InC Panel

I had the privilege of speaking on a panel with Mari White (producer, actor) and Faith Reel (Actors, Models and Talent for Christ) at Actors InC (ActorsInChrist.com). Here's the panel in seven episodes, which were released one at a time:













Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Interview with CFDb

I shared behind the scenes stories from two films in which I've performed and talked about my role in Indescribable, which is one of the finalists at the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival.  Click here for the interview.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

A most AMAZING plane ride

I read the following story, posted by MasterWorks MasterClass instructor Bev Holloway, just after an extraordinary encounter on a plane ride that we might have missed: 

“A man sat at a metro station in Washington DC and started to play the violin; it was a cold January morning. He played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time, since it was rush hour, it was calculated that 1,100 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.

Three minutes went by, and a middle aged man noticed there was musician playing. He slowed his pace, and stopped for a few seconds, and then hurried up to meet his schedule.

A minute later, the violinist received his first dollar tip: a woman threw the money in the till and without stopping, and continued to walk.

A few minutes later, someone leaned against the wall to listen to him, but the man looked at his watch and started to walk again. Clearly he was late for work.

The one who paid the most attention was a 3 year old boy. His mother tagged him along, hurried, but the kid stopped to look at the violinist. Finally, the mother pushed hard, and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. All the parents, without exception, forced them to move on.

In the 45 minutes the musician played, only 6 people stopped and stayed for a while. About 20 gave him money, but continued to walk their normal pace. He collected $32. When he finished playing and silence took over, no one noticed it. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the most talented musicians in the world. He had just played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, on a violin worth $3.5 million dollars.

Two days before his playing in the subway, Joshua Bell sold out at a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.

This is a real story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste, and priorities of people.

The outlines were: in a commonplace environment at an inappropriate hour: Do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize the talent in an unexpected context?

One of the possible conclusions from this experience could be: If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world playing the best music ever written, how many other things are we missing?” [Posted by Knowledge of Today. Full article in the Washington Post.]
Now back to the plane ride: The gentleman sitting next to us told us about his mind-blowing career in the entertainment business. Then he asked us what we did, and when Joyce told him she is a pastor he told us his wife is a Christian, and he loves going to church with her, but he has doubts that creep into his mind. 
I mentioned the reality TV show that concludes on Thursday about a former atheist's life as a Catholic: Minor Revisions with Jennifer Fulwiler. Joyce told him about Mark 9:24 (ESV): "I believe; help my unbelief!" 

He asked if we'd pray with him, so we all three took hands, and prayed on row 36. When we said amen all three of us were crying. Okay, I was sobbing! He said when we prayed he felt something like doubt leave his heart. Then he wanted to pray, and he prayed a beautiful prayer of commitment to the Lord.

We might have hurried past this gorgeous work of Art to get to our books or the movie. Lord, don't let us ever miss a MasterPiece like this!

Our new friend told us that we have to tell this story. So if you'd like to offer a prayer or word of encouragement to him in a comment below, we'll be sure to share it with him. We know he'd be touched.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Have a blessed Epiphany

We hope you're having a wonderful celebration of the arrival of the Wise Men. As we close out the Christmas Season, we wanted to send you a report of the Lord's goodness as we experienced it in 2012...

Four of our MasterWorks theatre
students on Times Square after opening
Off-Broadway.
For the first time we brought the MasterWorks theatre program to New York for performances Off-Broadway. You can find a full report at RichDrama.com/MWF.

This year I performed in two films (Christmas Grace and Beyond the Mask), performed, spoke and/or taught in 14 states, plus Toronto, Puerto Rico, Transylvania and London for a total of about 225 appearances. Thanks so much for all of your prayers and support through all of that!

Rich with Ian Sadler, organist for
Chariots of Fire.
My performance of Beyond the Chariots in Toronto was bookended by Ian Sadler playing the same pieces on the organ as he did in the Academy Award-winning film Chariots of Fire. To hear "Jerusalem" played as it had in the film, just before I walked out to perform my play about Eric Liddell, one of the main subjects of the film, was a very special moment indeed.  Two of the daughters of Eric Liddell also spoke that evening, marking the fourth such performance, starting with Heather Ingham, Eric's middle daughter, speaking after an Off-Broadway performance in 2006. Heather found out I was performing the play at Trafalgar Castle School for girls the following Monday, and she was kind enough to speak there, as well.

Rich with Eric Liddell's daughters
and their husbands.
The highlight of my time in Toronto was when Heather told me upon my arrival about the story told about her in Our Daily Bread, about how her faith had been "rekindled" through a prayer for her aunt which was instantly answered while they were in China preceding the 2008 Olympics, visiting the key places Eric and Flo Liddell had lived.

Puerto Rico, Transylvania and London were all during the two weeks of the Summer Olympics.

In Puerto Rico I taught with fellow board members of Christians in Theatre Arts at a conference for applied theatre practitioners. In London we had four performances in various parts of the city, and three were within five miles of the Olympic Pavillion. We were surprised that Transylvania was the highlight of the trip. We found ourselves laughing at everything, and it occurred to us that, in a land scarred by persecution, we were bringing healing through our laughter.

By the end of the second week of the Olympics we had reached people from 30 nations and every inhabited continent.

We're finalizing a documentary on how drama ministered to people across cultures and languages during the Olympics. Once that's finished, we'll post the announcement through our emailing: RichDrama.com/Updates.

Catch a sneak preview at CITA.org/PR12.

Have a blessed 2013. Wherever you are in the world, I'd love to bring one of my one-man plays and/or workshops to your community: RichDrama.com.

At the Eric Liddell Legacy Breakfast with world-record breaking Olympic gold
medalist Madeleine Manning Mimms, with whom I performed during the
Beijing Olympics, and Ashley Null, who served as a chaplain during
previous Olympics.