Addressing the Right to Live
SUMMARY: A court order allows a brain-dead woman to die of starvation, but she is poisoned before her body gives way to deprivation. A priest is accused of the crime. Is it murder or mercy killing? Forced to stand against the tyranny of an unethical judicial system, the priest risks everything to find justice for his friend and retribution for the courts that starved her. This powerful courtroom drama is an unapologetic exploration of the toxic mire of the right-to-life debate.
GLORIA DEI is a stage play written by Scot Lahaie.
The play is a work of fiction that explores the right-to-life debate and euthanasia, but it takes its inspiration from the Terri Schiavo court case which played out in Florida from 1990 to 2005.
Setting: The action of the play takes place in a jail cell and courtroom in Pinellas Park County, Florida in 2006. Additional memory scenes take the action beyond these two locations and back in time.
THE CAST OF CHARCTERS:
FATHER WILLIAM SEAMUS, a priest
JIM TAYLOR, William’s defense attorney
VICTOR MORALES, Gloria’s husband
OFFICER BOBBY FRANKS, the jailer
NORBERT HAYNES, the prosecutor for the District Attorney*
JUDGE BENJAMIN BAXTER, the presiding judge
A 6-MEMBER CHORUS who play the “Voices” and six of the twelve members of the jury.
VOICE ONE/ FELIX MOORE, Victor’s attorney
VOICE TWO/ THE BISHOP HORATIO MARCELLUS
VOICE THREE/ DR. JAMIE FISCHER, surgeon, Gloria’s attending physician*
VOICE FOUR/ KATY, Gloria’s Mother
VOICE FIVE/ JONATHAN HARVEY, County Coroner*
VOICE SIX/ JOHN, Gloria’s Father
* These roles may be played as either male or female.