Author: Mirella Klomp
In what is often considered ‘a society “after God”’, millions of Dutch participate annually in a public multi-media performance of Christ's Passion. What to make of this paradox? In Playing On: Re-staging the Passion after the Death of God, Mirella Klomp offers a theological analysis of this performance and those involved in it. Working in an interdisciplinary fashion and utilizing creative interludes, she demonstrates how precisely this production of Jesus' last hours carves out a new and unexpected space for God in a (post-)secular culture. Klomp argues compellingly that understanding God's presence in the Western world requires looking beyond the church and at the public domain; that is the future of practical theology. She lays out this agenda for practical theology by showing how the Dutch playfully rediscover Christian tradition, and – perhaps – even God.
Author: Mirella Klomp

This article looks at the particular ways in which the resurrection of Christ was staged in the public domain during four editions of a popular musical event named The Passion. Since its first edition in 2011, this annual performance on the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ has become a large media event in Dutch society. The author argues that its organizers—a television production company and two broadcasting companies—in their annual choices on how to shape and stage The Passion, make theological choices. Moreover, she argues that the staged theology of the organizers is to be considered a form of public theology. Pointing out that authority in late-modern network culture is subject of change, the author reveals how the production and broadcasting companies by organizing and actualizing a passion both prove themselves a leading party in the actualization of Christian tradition and turn up as players in the field of public theology.

In: International Journal of Public Theology

This article analyses the public significance of The Passion—a televised retelling of the Passion of Jesus, featuring pop songs and celebrities in the Dutch public sphere. Using a multidisciplinary approach, the authors demonstrate how performances like The Passion offer spaces in which the Dutch can reflect publicly on important identity issues, such as the role of Christian heritage in a supposedly secular age. The article contributes to deeper knowledge of how Dutch late-modern society deals with its secular self-understanding.

In: Journal of Religion in Europe