Centurion Marius

  • Cast Number: 1
  • Run-time: 15 minutes
  • Bible Reference: Luke 23:46
In this monologue we follow the career of a Roman soldier who is on duty during Herod’s massacre of the boy babies in Bethlehem, has a servant healed by Jesus in Capernum, and was at the cross when Jesus was crucified.

Costumes: Roman soldier costume

Sample of script:

actor is on stage with his back to the audience, looking upward

Leave him be, can’t you see, he’s dead.

(listens to unseen persons)

Yes, it is finished indeed!

( turns downstage, looks down, listens to unseen persons behind him, speaks)

No, I have no interest in gambling for his clothing . . torn, blood-stained . .

(listens to unseen persons)

Be my guest, spread them among all of you. . . Though what Roman soldiers such as we would want with miserable, threadbare Jewish clothing is more than I can fathom.

(frowns, angered)

Leave the women be, allow them their time of mourning. . . Now all of you go back to the barracks, your job here is done.

(listens to unseen persons)

The families and friends of the dead men will be here to take down the bodies soon enough, before the birds of prey pick the bones clean. . . Now go, all of you!

(listens to unseen persons)

I will be along soon enough, what I do here is none of your affair . . Go now!

(walks to side stage, turns profile to audience, looking toward centerstage, talks to self)

Those are all that are left . . the mother, the women, and the one they call John.
The loudmouth, Peter, he also is gone! . . Denying that he ever knew the Nazarene.
The rest have long since taken shelter . . . anywhere but here in Jerusalem.

(sad smile, shakes head)

And to think that I, Marius, long-serving centurion in this Imperial Roman army, once again have a personal encounter with this Nazarene preacher.

(pauses, thinks)

I remember, my first military assignment was right here in Jerusalem . .

Let’s see . . it was . . (pauses, remembering, shakes head, wry smile) . . Thirty-two years ago . . Surely that’s not possible, is it?. . .

I was a raw recruit, wet behind the ears . . My name, . . Marius . . allowed me to enter the service of the Imperial Roman army at barely 15 years of age . . This in spite of the fact that Marius, my grandfather and namesake, had established the law that no men shall be allowed in the military service of Rome until they had achieved the age of 17. But with the name “Marius” and with friends in high places, strings were pulled and with that I was off to service in the “Jewish situation” as it was called.

Ahh yes, off to that plum assignment in Jerusalem! . . Plum assignment? . . . Hardly! . . With the Jewish extremists on the one hand and the incorrigible King Herod on the other it was . . for all . . a no win situation!

Because of my position, as the grandson of the famous Marius, my career was to be fast-tracked, and so it was that I was named as one of the “immunes”, those excused from regular duties. Despite my tender years, and absence of any medical training, I was installed as “medical staff”.

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