College Stew

By Debra S. Coughlin


This is a murder mystery or another who dun it. As the four scenes are acted out, determine who attempted murder. Also determine who each character is in the Bible, because in truth this is an anology of a well known Bible story. Have fun.




Scene I

(Rita, Re (short for Marie) and Gary were all cousins who grew up in a small country town in the suburbs of a large city. They were a close knit group and when it came time to go away to college, no one was surprised that the three would choose the same Christian College. Re wanted to be a writer. She could just imagine day dreaming the days away with all sorts of fairy tales running through her head. Gary wanted to be a doctor, but he had neither the grades nor the stomach for it, so he decided that teaching might be a safer profession - maybe High School math or English. Rita on the other hand was a real go-getter. Business management was her gift. Her 4.0 grade point average and her great study habits were going to get both her and her cousins through the next four years.)
Re: (enters with paper bags stuffed and over flowing) Rita we are going to have so much fun this year! Just imagine all the all night pajama parties we can have in the dorm!
(Rita enters right behind her with her matching luggage.)
Rita: the only all night parties youíre goinna have is the all night slumber part with no snoring so you can be fresh for class.
Re: Oh come on Rita, college canít be that much harder than high school! I got through that ... by the skin of my teeth maybe ... but I graduated didnít I? Come on, let's go find Gary and check out his roommate! (both girls dump their stuff and exit).
(Gary enters his room. Josh his roommate is already unpacking.)
Gary: Hi, Iím Gary.
Josh: Hi, Iím Josh, glad to meet you. Where are you from?
Gary: Oh a little town not too far from here and you?
Josh: Oh not from anywhere around here. Whatís your major? Mine is pre-med.
Gary: Secondary Education, but I wish it were pre-med.
Josh (smiles) I am sure God has a plan for you, Gary. Not everyone is called to save lives in the same way. Iím sure He will use you in a great way as a teacher.
Gary: (relaxes and smiles) Hey, I got a great idea, why donít I take you to find my two cousins. I have a feeling we are all going to get to be great friends over the next few years.
(Just before the two could leave, there is a knock on the door. Several upper classmen are standing in the doorway.)
Christopher: Hey, you two, Welcome. Weíre here to let you know you are invited to our weekly studies. Itís party time with a bit of good advice tacked on.. You know, enough info to keep the Headmaster thinking we are really working hard. As for the rest of the study, what we learn is our business, right. All freshmen are welcome for the first two weeks, after that, weíll let you know if you get into our fraternity. Only this is a secret fraternity, since the college frowns on such things.
Nick: Yea, and just a friendly reminder. Life here at the college can be tough on anyone who doesnít fit in. We know that wonít be you two guys, but just to let you know, we have eyes and ears everywhere. We take care of our own, but we donít take to kindly to outsiders.
Josh: (with a smile): Hey, thanks for thinking of us, guys. But Gary and I both think we will have our hands full just studying. We both thought we would put off joining anything right away. But we sure appreciate the offer and if we change our minds, we will be sure to let you know.

Scene 2

(The four new friends did in fact grow closerÖ eating in the cafeteria, going to Bible Studies, and study groups. Rita was so busy with all her classes and extra circular activities she didnít always pay close attention to group. She was the only one who did not notice that Gary was losing weight and appearing a bit tired. But Josh and Re both were concerned.)
Re: Gary, would you & Josh be interested in going to the library after the pep rally tonight?
Gary: I donít know, Re, Josh mentioned helping me study for our Bible exam.
Re: Oh, that would be so great! Professor Drymouth is so boring! Maybe we could all study together. Iíll let Rita know, if she can fit us in.
Gary: Ok, Iíll tell Josh that he will have at least one more underfoot. Heís so great, a lot of the guys come to him for help, but he always has time for you, Re.
Re: Oh, Gary, heís always there for any of us, I know heís been going out of his way to get your work when you miss classÖ and he doesnít even have the same courses. Whatever will we do when he is away on that mission trip next semester?
Gary (shaking his head).. I donít know.. I do know that whatever I do, Iím staying away from Christopher and his group. They pretend to be having a Bible Study, but itís far from anything my Bible teaches.
Re: Yea, and they seem like they hate Josh. I think they are just jealous, that or worried that Josh will find more favor with the Headmaster than Christopher. Itís not like we ever got in their face about their phony Bible Study Parties.
Gary: I donít even know why they came to a Christian College. There are a lot of colleges where they could have a good time and no one would even care. I donít know why itís so important for them to have everyone convinced they are actually the good guys when in secret all they want is a good time. Why should they even care what Josh and his Bible Study does?
(Meanwhile Josh and his companions were preparing for their mission trip. It wasnít that it was far away, it was an inner city medical internship mission. But the city was a dangerous place and certainly not friendly to Christians in the housing slums where the team was stationed. Jason and Tom were very concerned about the possible dangers. There had just been rumors about riots and even a back stabbing, and it seemed as if Christians were the targets.)
Jason: I was warned that our medical mission could be one where we are not welcomed just because of whom we represent.
Tom: Josh thinks we will be fine in the daylight. Itís night when most of the gangs attack. Anyway, I figure that if we die, at least we die with Josh. Josh always makes me feel like what ever I am doing for the Lord; it is worth it all. Iím glad Josh will be with us to help us remember why we are really there.
Jason: Iíve never been sure why Josh chose pre-med. I know heís so smart and will make a great doctor, but I wonder if heís missed his calling. He would make a great pastor. Of course heíll make a lot more money as a doctor than any old pastor.
Tom: Well, in Joshís case, Iím sure itís not the money that influenced his decision. Every time I get any doubt about what God expects from me, I just need some time with Josh to straighten it all out. Like I said, Iím sure glad heís on our team.
Nick: Hey guys, I know itís late, but have either of you seen Josh?
Tom: No, but did you check his room? Both he and Gary are usually in way before curfew.
(Nick shakes his head and heads off towards the dorm room. Tom shakes his head too.. what on earth would Nick want with Josh?)

Scene 3

(So the January semester began with snow everywhere and three friends returning to college. Josh and his colleagues were on extended leave in the city clinic. They would be returning within the month.)
Rita: Re, have you seen or heard from Gary? I canít seem to find him on campus, and he doesnít answer the phone in his room.
Re: No, and he hasnít been to Bible Study or his classes either. I think we need to contact the Dean and have him checked on.
Student: Rita, Re! Iíve been looking all over for you two. Dean Wilson wants to see you his office as soon as possible.
(The girls head off to the Headmasterís office.)
Dean Wilson: Rita, Re, please sit down. I have some rather difficult news for you too. We found Gary unconscious in his dorm room. He was taken by ambulance to Bethany Hospital but it seems they cannot revive him. I took the liberty of contacting your parents and relatives. I also left word at the clinic where his room mate and team are serving.
Re: (crying, whispers) NO!
Rita: I wish Josh were here, heíd know what to do.
Dean Wilson: Iím so sorry girls. The hospital is trying everything they can. They suspected poison at first, but they are not really sure of anything. They have pumped his stomach, tried shock treatment. He just doesnít seem to respond.
(The girls rush out. When they reach the hospital they are immediately surrounded by family and friends. Everyone seems hopeless. This continued for two more days until in walks Josh.)
Rita; Josh! Iím so glad you were here. I just wish you hadnít been on that internship right now. I just know if you had been here, this would never have happened.
Josh: May I go in and see him?
Rita: I donít know, are you sure you can handle this?
(Josh nods, and he and the doctor enter Garyís room. A short time later, both the doctor and Josh return and both are all smiles.)
Doc: That was incredible. I donít know how you knew that, Josh. You are going to make one great doctor. Who would have thought it was blood poison, and that your transfusion would be all he needed. We were just hitting a stone wall before you came.
Josh: It just wasnít his time, Doc. God has a plan for all of us and this was just part of His plan for Gary. The Lord gets the glory for giving me the wisdom and power to do this.
Re: (running up and hugging Josh) Oh Josh, thank you! I just knew if you were here, things would work out!

Scene 4

(The four friends returned to college but not everything was the same. Some rumors actually accused Josh of being responsible for the poisoning. Others accused Gary of faking it for attention. Christopher and his gang thought that since neither Gary nor Josh were in their fraternities that they were just trying to call attention to their own Bible Study group. Still, graduation grew closer and the Bible Study group was making its final plans. The group decided to have one last get together just before graduation night. They would each sell back all their schoolbooks, and the money they gathered would go to one last charity on behalf of the group. Jason had the perfect need back in his hometown.)
Christopher: Itís almost too bad that Gary pulled through. Our school would have benefited from the publicity had he died Ė look at all the sympathy and donations the news would have brought our way. Or better yet, if something had happened to goodie goodie Josh when he was out in the inner city mission. It would have been so easy for some gang member to make our fraternity rich. Just one death could benefit so many.
Nick: (a bit surprised and disgusted) Christopher, Iím not sure I follow you. If Gary had died from a poisoning here at the college, there would have been an investigation. And I have no idea why Josh dying for what he believes in would benefit you  any way. Sometimes I donít understand this fraternity at all. At least itís over; itís graduation and time to enter the real world. In fact, I wished I had joined Joshís group back then. If theyíll let me, Iím gonna head over to their last meeting now - consider my fraternity days over!
(Rita enters carrying a plate of cookies): I stayed up all night baking these cookies and a couple pies. This is going to be a party to remember!)
Gary: Iím gonna miss this so much. I canít believe these four years are really over.
Josh: Jason, Iím glad you will be taking care of the donation money for that poor family back home.
Jason (smugly): Yea, I know for a fact that they sure could use this. Iíll be sure to get it to them right away.
Re: (enters carrying a wrapped gift) Here Josh, I just had to get this for you! Itís a sweater, I know youíll need it on the mission field and you would never spend the money on yourself.
Jason: Man, Re, we all agreed. No gifts except the charity. We could have used that money - I mean the Thomsonís family could have.
Josh: Re, thank you so much. I really did not need something to keep me warm. I have some really cold weather ahead and it will help prepare me. I know she didnít mean any harm, Jason. Re was just tying to help me get ready for the future and my mission.
Jason: Well, I think it would have been better spent on the Thomsonís because they are really poor. She didnít have to buy you such an expensive name brand.
Josh: I understand and appreciate your concern for the poor, Jason, but this sweater isnít going to change their tax bracket either.
(So graduation came and went. Gary became a wise teacher. Rita a successful business woman, and Re a wonderful sensitive poet and storyteller. She loves to tell stories, mostly those that reflect lessons she learned at Joshís Bible Stories. And Josh, he became a great Physician.

Revelation Ballet

Object of the mystery:
Guess the murder _______________________________

Now Identify the following characters in the Bible.









Revelation Revealed



Rita: Martha (Luke 11:41)

Gary: Lazarus (John 11: 11-44)

Re: Mary (Luke 11:39)

Josh: Jesus.

Christopher: Caíiaphas (John 11: 49-51)

Nick: Nicodemus (John 3:1)

Jason: Judas (John 12:6)

Tom: Thomas (John 11:16)


Copyright Debra S. Coughlin, all rights reserved.
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