A response from long-time PT member Rudi Krause on MOTHER TERESA IS DEAD. The show is over, but it was too good to pass up on sharing this one.
The tension which is at the heart of the story concerns looking after one's own (loyalty to family) and engaged openness to the needs of others, be it through charitable activities or involvement in social justice concerns. A big part of the creative resolution to this tension must lie with radical hospitality, finding ways to bring others and their needs into our space, perhaps through adopting or fostering children, or, on a larger scale, opening our society's doors to refugees. This needs to move in the reverse direction as well, finding genuine ways of making oneself dependent on the hospitality of others. This may never be enough must is a good starting place.
The final scene with its invitation to "sit and think" made me think. For one, it's a reminder that active engagement needs to be balanced with and supported by contemplation. Then, "thinking" in our Germanic languages at least, is related to "thanking." Earlier in the play there was mention of the importance of gratitude. Then there is something about the final scene which makes us think of communion, of table-fellowship, albeit without food, yet highlighting and underscoring the communal nature of communion, something which is often ignored or forgotten. This last scene is a wonderfully understated yet profound enactment of what lies at the heart of our humanity - both the need and the ability to reach out our hands to one another.