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OFF-BROADWAY 'CATECHISM' SHOW AT CHURCH.

Byline: Carol Rock Staff Writer

NEWHALL - A gastronomic tradition will be replaced with an unforgettable trip down memory lane on April 16, when the St. Joan Women's Guild of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church presents ``Late Nite Catechism,'' a one-woman off-Broadway show that has been playing around the world for the last decade.

``We have one fund raiser per year,'' said Sheila Zacha, who is working on the event. ``We've always had the Corn, Cluck and Beef Dinner about this time but this year we decided to do something different.''

The show, written and produced by Vicki Quade and Maripat Donovan, re-creates a catechism class, using the audience as the ``students'' attending class for various reasons. Sister (no last name is ever given) runs the class through interactive lessons on becoming Catholic and a brief course on the lives of the saints.

Some audience members are rewarded for their correct answers with religious trinkets, while others may find themselves on stage under Sister's watchful gaze for misbehaving. In other words, it's a slice-of-life comedy for anyone raised around nuns.

``I had read about it in The Tidings (a publication of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles) and my parents took me to see it at another parish,'' said Karen Ruballo, who chairs the event. ``I came back to the women's group and told them about it. I thought it was very funny and that we had to do it. As far as I know, it hasn't been done in the Santa Clarita valley before.''

The show will be preceded by a silent auction and hors d'ouevres in the parish hall beginning at 6 p.m., followed by an 8 p.m. performance in the church. Tickets are $35 each.

``The money is going to the OLPH parish community,'' Zacha explained. ``Some will go to the school, the rest to the general fund for the parish. With past fund raisers, we designated moneys for specific projects, such as purchasing additional chalices for eucharistic ministers to distribute hosts. Last year, we purchased some lightweight vestments for Mass. During the summer, they get pretty hot.''

Tickets will be available after all Masses on Saturday and Sunday and March 20 and 21.

Ruballo explained that tickets would not be sold at the church on March 13 and 14 so as not to conflict with a Knights of Columbus fund raiser on those dates.

Flyers with ticket request forms are available from the Guild. Call Ruballo at 287-3570 or Zacha at 259-7477. Checks may be mailed in and tickets will be held at the door the night of the performance.

Carol Rock, (661) 257-5252

carol.rock(at)dailynews.com
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Mar 4, 2004
Words:444
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