April 17, 2005

When a parochial school nun casts suspicion on a popular priest, the result is a timely Pulitzer Prize-winning drama


By Anne Marie Welsh

April 17, 2005

NEW YORK – As John Patrick Shanley's drama "Doubt: a Parable" rounds to a close, starchy old Sister Aloysius tells the eager young Sister James, "In the pursuit of wrongdoing, one steps away from God." Then balefully, the broken nun adds: "Of course, there is a price."

For her, the cost is huge. This nun's conviction that a priest has molested an altar boy at her school, yet been rewarded with a promotion to a new parish, shakes her faith in the morality of the church and her belief in God, the foundations of her life.

Sister Aloysius may or may not be right about the priest's crime in "Doubt," but her relentless drive, like the truth-seeking of Oedipus, has unintended consequences. She now sees through the culture of clericalism that has isolated her and made her powerless; in the process, she has lost her bearings.

Posted by kshaw at April 17, 2005 03:26 PM