Greek Christians and neo-Nazis unite against ‘blasphemous’ gay play

TERRENCE McNally’s Corpus Christi is in hot water again – this time in Greece where an Athens theatre has been forced to end performances of the play that portrays Jesus Christ as gay.

The play sparked violent protests by neo-Nazi groups and ultra-Orthodox Christians.

An anti Corpus Christi protester brandishes a picture of Jesus

The play’s translator and its director said in a joint statement:

Corpus Christi performances are ending. We are sorry that people were beaten up, abused and scorned through no intent of our own… we tried to perform the play for three weeks but it was not possible.

Originally staged in New York in 1998, the play depicts Jesus and the Apostles as gay men living in modern-day Texas.

When the show opened in Athens last month, scores of ultra-Orthodox protesters gathered outside the theatre, demanding the “blasphemous” play’s cancellation.

Several members of the neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn also turned up, blocking access to the theatre and turning spectators away.

Witnesses said that neo-Nazi supporters beat up a reporter who tried to film protesters tearing down posters outside the theatre while riot police stood by.

The play’s Albanian-born director Laertis Vassileiou later said he had received death threats.

Such displays of violence that took place outside the theatre doors did not occur anywhere else in the world where Corpus Christi was performed, except by fanatical Muslims.

Muslims consider Jesus a messenger of God and revere his mother Mary.

The two men who staged the play added that attempts to ban it had failed in court and that they had received invitations to perform in festivals in Bosnia and Colombia.

Once on the fringe of Greek society, Golden Dawn has been flexing its muscles after picking up over 400,000 votes in recent elections on the back of immigration and crime fears.

It has sent squads of black-clad members to intimidate foreign peddlers at open-air markets, has publicly intimidated political opponents, and is believed to be behind an escalating campaign of migrant beatings around the country.

The Church of Greece has officially condemned these acts of violence but a number of senior churchmen are believed to support the group’s agenda.

Hat tip: Bill Murray

22 responses to “Greek Christians and neo-Nazis unite against ‘blasphemous’ gay play”

  1. barriejohn says:

    That “picture of Jesus” is so realistic! Meanwhile, a bit closer to home:

    While the British state protected the leader of a human rights-abusing regime, I was arrested for a non-violent, legal protest, which involved nothing more sinister than holding a flag. I was deemed to have breached the peace. I was also threatened with further breach of the peace charges for “shouting loudly” and for what one police officer described as “pointing your finger at me in a way that I find intimidating.”

  2. tony e says:

    Was Jesus gay?

    In a society, at the time, where men married young, he hung about with 12 ‘friends’ you have to have suspicions.

    But, if this theory annoys the christians, it can only be for the good.

    Here is Peter Tatchell’s take on it.

  3. Ivan says:

    Christians teaming up with nazis? That’s a first,oh, wait…

  4. T says:

    So the religious resort to violence and intimidation yet again. Where were the police?

  5. barriejohn says:

    I think you’ll find that it is the gays who are the “bullies”, T. I suggest that you go back and read the article more carefully!

  6. AgentCormac says:

    Is the woman holding the picture of Jesus a fanatical xtian or a neo-nazi? With that crazed look in her eye she could pass for either. Or both.

  7. RabbitOnAStick says:

    if you look closely there’s Kemal Ataturk to the right of the woman but with a hitler moustache.

  8. Barry Duke says:

    BarrieJohn, I just discovered that the Indonesian President was all set to push for an international protocol against blasphemy in September. I blogged about it here, in relation to Tatchell’s arrest:

  9. Lazy Susan says:

    That’s a picture of Jesus? How do they know?

  10. Stephen Turner says:

    And the near-naked man who was with or near Jesus at the time of his arrest? What’s that about?

    Gospel according to St. Mark (Douay-Rheims Bible)
    14:50. Then his disciples, leaving him, all fled away.
    14:51. And a certain young man followed him, having a linen cloth
    cast about his naked body. And they laid hold on him.
    14:52. But he, casting off the linen cloth, fled from them naked.

  11. Matt Westwood says:

    Yep, fascism is on the rise throughout the world. We’re on the bring of a war that will be so destructive it will make WWI and WWII combined look like a sunday-school picnic troubled by a few wasps.

    Two choices: either arm yourself and go out fascist-bashing, or turn on the TV, put your feet up and watch the entertainment.

  12. Trevor Blake says:

    Adding to Stephen Turner’s quotes:

    Mark 10:46 states: “Then they came to Jericho. As He was leaving Jericho with His disciples…” This verse is puzzling: why mention that Jesus and His disciples went to Jericho and then left Jericho? Did something happen in Jericho that isn’t mentioned in the modern Bible? A discovery made in 1958 may provide the answer. In 1958, Morton Smith (a theology graduate student from Columbia University) went to the Mar Saba Monastery near Jerusalem to catalog their library. While he was there, Smith discovered a transcription of a letter written by Clement of Alexandria to “Theodore” laid into the back of the 1646 edition of a book called Epistolae genuinae S. Ignatii Martyris. The letter claims that in earlier editions of Mark there was a passage that described what Jesus and His disciples did in Jericho. Here is the missing passage:

    [Then they came to Jericho.] And they came into Bethany. And a certain woman whose brother had died was there. And, coming, she prostrated herself before Jesus and said to Him, ‘Son of David, have mercy on me.’ But the disciples rebuked her. And Jesus, being angered, went off with her into the garden where the tomb was, and straightway a great cry was heard from the tomb. And going near, Jesus rolled away the stone from the door of the tomb. And straightaway, going in where the youth was, He stretched forth His hand and raised him, seizing his hand. But the youth, looking upon Him, loved Him and began to beseech Him that he might be with Him. And going out of the tomb, they came into the house of the youth, for he was rich. And after six days Jesus told him what to do, and in the evening the youth came to Him, wearing a linen cloth over his naked body. And he remained with Him that night, for Jesus taught him the mystery of the Kingdom of God. And thence, arising, he returned to the other side of the Jordan. [As He was leaving Jericho with His disciples…]


    I’m not a believer that Jesus ever existed, and if He did it doesn’t matter if he was gay or straight or celibate. Beating people up over a play is unacceptable behavior, period.

  13. Buffy says:

    Christians teaming up with nazis? That’s a first,oh, wait…

    I was thinking something along those lines.

  14. L.Long says:

    Christians teaming up with nazis? That’s a first,oh, wait…???
    They were always Xtians.

    The Russia incident and this one clearly shows that the ONLY difference between xtians & the taliban is the amount of power they can flex. Any country that gives religious folk ANY power thru any kind of laws have totally forgotten their midevil history.

  15. barriejohn says:

    From Natural Atheists/Atheist Artists:

    This piece was done by Anastasia Gorbunov for a competition to encourage reading and literacy among Russians. The caption on the bottom loosely translates to “Reading isn’t dangerous. Not reading is.”

    It was later edited by an unknown source, removing the original caption, and replacing it with a “motivational poster” style caption reading “this is exactly what books do.”

  16. Lazy Susan says:

    Good poster. It doesn’t need a caption.

  17. barriejohn says:

    Lazy Susan: Others have said the same. If anything, the caption lessens its impact!!/NaturalAtheists

  18. Matt Westwood says:

    Reading isn’t dangerous, at least, not if you’re a local.

  19. Stephen Turner says:

    Trevor Blake: very interesting, thank you.

  20. allismyth says:

    What would they do to the San Damiano cross in Italy the Penis cross was 12th century design so the idea has been around for a while. see also the St. Charles Catholick church in Warr Acre in Oklahoma. They love it there.They just don’t want it out for the public. Leave it to the religion of peace to bring violence to the streets. That look on the woman is someone just before they pull the pin. Weird and scary. Gawd protect us from your followers.

  21. 1859 says:

    Some 30 odd years ago I watched a docu on the telly (maybe on BBC – can’t remember). The subject was Christ – or rather a VERY alternative view of this guy. Since it was so long agao when I watched I can only recall the main points, which are as follows. The cameras showed a monastery somewhere in the Middle East. It was an extremely ancient place run by an order of monks called The Essenes – who, apparently had been around since the time of the Big Man himself. The monastery was surrounded by an enormous solid red wall maybe 5 meters high. There was no entrance to the monastery – everything went in or out by way of a hoist (like a wooden crane). Anyway, inside was an incredibly old library stuffed with books and crumbling parchments. The investigating reporter/researcher had found among these ancient scribblings rather a lot of references to Christ roaming around the desert scantily clad with young men in tow. However there was one very explicit reference to Jesus ‘initiating’ young men in a cave which they had to enter naked and alone with Jesus. The docu did not give any conclusions – it was just concerned about presenting this new-found evidence – but the import of the findings was obvious. However I never heard any more about this film or documentary. Does anyone recall having seen it?