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Ohio Wesleyan University to Host Religious Performance Artist
Free Nov. 13 Event to Depict Life of Slain Archbishop Oscar Romero

November 1, 2007

Al Staggs
View an excerpt of ‘Oscar Romero: A Martyr’s Homily.’
DELAWARE, OHIO – Performance artist and former Baptist minister Al Staggs will present his one-person play “Oscar Romero: A Martyr’s Homily” at 8 p.m. Nov. 13 in Ohio Wesleyan University’s Chappelear Drama Center, 45 Rowland Ave. The event is free and open to the public. No tickets are required.

Sponsored by Ohio Wesleyan’s Chaplain’s Office, the performance tells the story of Archbishop Oscar Romero of San Salvador, who was assassinated in 1980 while celebrating Mass. Though his killer has never been found, Romero is widely believed to have been slain as a result of his involvement in human rights and justice issues in El Salvador.

Romero’s death resulted in an international outcry for human rights reform in El Salvador, and he is considered by some as the unofficial patron saint of the Americas. Outside of Catholicism, Romero is honored by other religious denominations, including the Church of England. Romero is one of 10 modern-day martyrs depicted in statues above the Great West Door of Westminster Abbey in London. Other martyrs honored there include Martin Luther King Jr.

Staggs, who travels the country providing inspirational programming, previously visited Ohio Wesleyan in 2003. At that time, he performed “A View from the Underside: The Legacy of Dietrich Bonhoeffer.” Bonhoeffer, a Lutheran minister, was put to death in 1945 for his participation in the German Resistance movement against the Nazis.

Staggs earned his master’s degree in theology from Harvard Divinity School and his doctorate of ministry degree from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. He served as a congregational Baptist minister for 24 years before becoming a full-time performance artist. More information about Staggs and his performances is available online at www.alstaggs.com.

Ohio Wesleyan University is an undergraduate liberal arts college that transforms the lives of its students through a combination of rigorous academics, mentoring relationships, and real-world experiences. Featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” the private university’s 1,850 students come from 40 states and 45 countries. Visit www.owu.edu for more information.