January 22, 2006

'Doubt' goes deeper than issue of abuse

The Post and Courier

The Post and Courier

NEW YORK - "Doubt can be a bond as powerful and sustaining as certainty," says the young Catholic priest, Father Flynn, in the spellbinding Broadway show, "Doubt," winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for drama.

Playwright John Patrick Shanley, who won the Oscar for the film "Moonstruck," has arranged this on-the-surface predictable story to surprise you like a cold dash of water in the face.

At first, "Doubt" appears only to dissect a ubiquitous subject in the news today: the sexual abuse inflicted by priests upon Catholic school boys.

But Shanley, a product of Catholic schools, has not penned a mere screed against the Catholic Church.

Rather, "Doubt" is set in 1964 in a Catholic school in the Bronx long before the subject of sexual abuse of young boys by Catholic priests ever came to the public's attention.

"Maybe we're not supposed to sleep so well," says the aged Sister Aloysius to a young nun, Sister James, who is worrying about having reported the suspicious behavior of Father Flynn, a teacher and basketball coach at the school.

Posted by kshaw at January 22, 2006 08:43 AM