Touched by an Atheist

By John Cosper, Jr


A parody of the TV show, Touched by an Angel, showing the hopelessness of living without God.



(Dana enters a living room set, complete with couch, coffee table and phone. A note is on the table. Dana is carrying a Kmart bag and mail.)

DANA- Honey? Darling, I'm home. (sits on couch) I got those light bulbs you needed for your office. (pause) Honey? (sees the note) What's this?

(Dana picks up the note and reads.)

FELIX'S VOICE- Dear Dana, I'm leaving you. I can't bear living in so much debt any more, much less your snoring problem, so I'm flying to Tahiti with my blonde, blue-eyed 19 year old intern Tammy. Don't forget to water my fern. Love, Felix.

DANA- What? Leaving? Felix, how you leave me like this? (thoughtful pause) And what do you mean by living with debt? (picks up another letter.)

VOICE OF LETTER- Dear Ms. Webster, we are very sorry to inform you that due to your husband's failure to pay his debt of $470,000, we will be forced to seize your home and all of your belongings. You have ten days to vacate the property.'

DANA- This is terrible. Because of my louse of an ex-husband's debts, I'm about to become homeless. If only my parents would help their prodigal daughter...

(Dana picks up the phone and dials.)

DANA'S MOM ON MACHINE- This is Deb and Roger Webster. Please leave a message and we'll call you back ... unless you're that louse of a daughter Dana whom we will NEVER forgive for the things she has done!

DANA- O woe is me! I've lost my husband and my house, and my family won't forgive me. Is there any hope for a lost soul like me? Any guidance? Any heavenly messengers who can deliver me?

(Heavenly music. A heavenly light and smoke pour from stage right. Burt enters.)

DANA- What's this? A shimmering figure? Oh, thank God you're here!

BURT- (sniffs) God? Who's God?

ANNOUNCER- (gentle voice) And now, it's time for another episode of 'Touched by an Atheist.'

DANA- Who are you?

BURT- Oh, sorry. My name's Burt.

DANA- Are you an angel?

BURT- No, I'm an atheist.

DANA- An atheist? You mean you're not a heavenly creature sent to put things right in my meager little life?

BURT- Heck no! I don't believe in God, or Heaven, or Hell, or Satan.

DANA- You don't?

BURT- And while we're at it, I also don't believe in fairies, leprechauns, aliens, UFO's, the second shooter on the grassy knoll, the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, or Regis Philban. But enough about me. I'm here to offer you guidance, so make with the sad story.

DANA- Well, where shall I begin? I've just lost my husband to a 19-year old intern, I've been hit with debts I can't repay, I'm losing my home, and I have no place to go.

BURT- No husband, no money, no house? That's a real bummer.

DANA- I know.

BURT- Maybe ... maybe you're parents will let you move in with them. Huh?

DANA- Impossible.

BURT- Why do you say that?

DANA- Because of ... something I did ... a long time ago ...

BURT- What could be so bad that they would ever forgive you?

(Dana whispers in Burt's ear. Burt pushes her away in disgust.)

BURT- Egads, woman! (puts his hand over his ear) I'm gonna have to wash this ear now!

DANA- I thought you were here to help me, not condemn me.

BURT- Sorry.

DANA- So what can I do? Is there any hope for me? Any chance things could get better?

BURT- (not real positive) Yeah, I guess.

DANA- You guess what?

BURT- I guess there's a chance you'll end up okay.

DANA- What kind of chance?

BURT- Oh, I dunno. One in ... twenty maybe?

DANA- One in twenty?

BURT- Don't quote me on it, but I think those are about the odds.

DANA- You think? You think?

BURT- Yeah.

DANA- Burt, I'm looking for answers, not thoughts. I need something solid that I can believe in.

BURT- Sorry. You got me there.

DANA- You mean to tell me, you came here to listen to my problems just so you could tell me there's no hope?

BURT- Hey, I didn't say that. I just said I didn't think there was any hope. Except ...

DANA- Except? Except what?

BURT- Well, there is one thought.

DANA- Yes?

BURT- But you don't strike me as the type to commit suicide.

DANA- Suicide? That's not an answer!

BURT- Hey! It would put an end to your debts, your homelessness, your family problems, and your pathetic love life, not to mention your whining and your snoring.

DANA- I can't believe you! Here I am, my life is in shambles, looking for a second chance. I need something that I can believe in to give me hope so I can rebuild my life. Instead, all I get is random speculation and a chicken's way out.

BURT- Now, Dana, don't you think you're being just a little unfair?

DANA- Unfair? How am I being unfair?

BURT- You're expecting me to say, 'It's okay, Dana. God is with you, He will heal your wounds, and set you on your feet again.' How am I supposed to give an answer like that when I don't believe in anything?

DANA- Why are you trying to give hope to others when you obviously have no hope of your own. You believe in nothing. You have faith in nothing. So how can you give to someone else something that isn't yours to give, thus making the whole world a better place to live. (pause, then shrugging off the previous thoughts) Nah!


© John Cosper Jr
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