. all rights belong to Tanis Harms –
. refer to www.church-skits.com
HOARDER BURIED ALIVE – written by Tanis Harms
TOPIC: obedience, cleanliness
SCRIPTURE: Matt.23:23-28; John 13:5-10; 1 Cor.6:19;
. 2 Cor.7:1; 2 Tim.2:20-23; 1 John 1:5-2:17
Style: allegory/conversation: a counselor helps
. a stubborn hoarder see how they are hanging
. on to sins which is making a mess
. of his/her life.
Cast: COUNSELOR, HOARDER, PERSONS 1-5
Set & Props: PEOPLE dressed like garbage or in black,
(HOARDER is on stage, surrounded by PERSONS 1-5,
who crouch down on the floor like garbage.
COUNSELOR enters and tries to approach HOARDER,
but can’t because of all the bodies lying around.)
C Hi, I’m Gloria. And you are Mark?
(You can change the names appropriately.
COUNSELOR reaches way over PERSONS 1-5 to shake the hand
of HOARDER. COUNSELOR then looks around at the PERSONS.)
C So what do we have here?
H This is my home.
C Yes, I understand that you were given a big house-
H To keep forever.
C That’s right. What a lovely gift.
H It is. And no one can take it away from me.
. It’s mine.
C I understand that. What I don’t understand -
. is why you have let it become so – messy.
H It’s not messy. Didn’t you see the outside?
. I like to keep my lawn cut, clean and green.
C The outside looks very lovely. But, the 2
. inside does not represent the outside at all.
H That’s why I don’t like to have people over
. any more.
C So you have just written off all people?
. What about the one who gave you the house?
H Well, sometimes I’ll invite him over, and we
. sit on the porch and talk for a few minutes.
C Well, the one who gave you the house told me
. that you were given some house care guidelines.
H Yes. I – have them here somewhere.
(HOARDER looks around, unable to move.)
C You do realize, the one who gave you the house
. really wants you to ENJOY the house. They had it
. professionally cleaned for you, so you could
. just move right in and start enjoying the house
. right away, and have guests over, and-
H Yes, and I still have that - freedom.
C So why have you chosen to collect all this garbage
. and clutter up your house and your life?
H I don’t understand what you’re talking about.
C You are a hoarder.
H No I’m not.
C You were given this big, clean house, and now,
. you have cluttered it up so it has made it difficult
. for you to even move around, or do anything.
H I don’t have a problem.
C But - look around you.
H (does not look) I don’t see any issue.
C Do you at least notice the smell?
H No! I don’t notice anything out of place.
C You have a lot of – garbage.
H Everything is in its place.
C Well, there is garbage – in your “place” –
. but it should not be here in the first place.
H Hey, these are all my things.
C Can you not see that you have a problem?
H It’s my house - I have my space – I’m good.
C You have had this garbage around you for so long,
. you can no longer see it. But it’s all ugly
. and smelly.
H You get used to it.
C Exactly, but why do you want to?
H I’m still able to function.
C Barely. You may have your space, but –
. are you using it wisely? Are you really happy?
. You know, it is a very good idea to houseclean.
H I don’t see the point. It’s just work.
C Well, the longer you let the garbage pile up,
. the more work it will be to clean it up.
. You seem very grumpy. Do you really like
. living this way?
H (has difficulty admitting the need for help)
. No! No, I’m not happy! Not at all.
C Then, you’ll let me help you clean this up?
. Don’t you want to be free to move around
. your entire house - without falling over things,
. or getting hurt?
H Yes. Yes I do want that.
C Well, let’s get started then. 4
H You must think I’m such a terrible person.
. You probably think that I don’t even deserve
. this house.
C We all make mistakes.
H Do you think I will lose the house?
C No, the house is very definitely yours - forever.
. It just needs - a good cleaning. You know,
. it’s just so much easier to clean up a mess
. as soon as it happens. (sighing) Now, let’s see,
. what is this here?
(COUNSELOR picks up PERSON 1 [PERSON 1 stands up].)
P 1 I need more things – I’m going to take more things
. and lie about it. (sees & reaches for C’s necklace)
. I like that necklace. I want that necklace.
. Give it to me. It must be mine.
H (referring to PERSON 1) I might need that.
C This represents stealing from your neighbors.
H They weren’t using any of those things.
C It’s stealing and lying. It’s wrong and it’s
. got to go. You need to stop stealing and lying.
. It is really making a mess out of your life.
. Can’t you see how it is impacting the relationships
. around you? As a result, no one can trust you.
H Okay. Okay. That can go.
(COUNSELOR gently pushes PERSON 1 toward the exit.)
C How does that feel?
H Kind of - good - actually. I’m just wondering
. what I can replace that with?
C How about – giving? Giving to people, and
. doing good things for people, instead of taking
. and instead of demanding.
H That sounds like a better alternative.
C Okay. Moving on. What about this one?
(COUNSELOR picks up PERSON 2 who looks at HOARDER.)
P 2 There’s a really bad party tonight. I know
. you wanna go. Everything you could possibly
. imagine will be there. No one needs to know.
H I – I want to keep that.
C Is it really helping you? Does it really
. build up your life in a positive way?
H No, no that really messes me up. It’s sometimes
. kind of fun while I’m doing it, but afterwards,
. I feel just horrible. Like a complete mess!
(PERSON 2 reaches out and grabs HOARDER by the throat
and looks threateningly into HOARDER’S eyes.)
P 2 Don’t let go of me. You need me! I’m fun!
H It really is like a chain around my throat –
. choking the life out of me.
C So you want to get rid of it?
H Yes. Please help me get rid of it.
(COUNSELOR gently pushes PERSON 2 toward the exit.)
C We can get you extra help with that, so you can
. live a pure and holy life. But this is something
. you really need to work on and pray about.
H I get that.
C Okay, what’s this?
(COUNSELOR picks up PERSON 3.)
P 3 (to C) You stupid person, you think you know
. so much, but you have the I.Q. of a farm animal.
. And you certainly don’t know how to dress yourself.
H I have to keep that.
H Ah, well, I use that to try to feel better about
C And exactly how does that work?
H If I put others down, I - look better?
P 3 (to C) Of course, you idiot! Do you want to fight
. about it, huh? I can fight with the best of them.
. I’m in every debate possible.
C (to H) Wouldn’t you prefer to have peace
. in your life instead? You’d look better too,
. if you were a faithful friend who encouraged others.
H I can see how that would be better.
C So it can go?
(COUNSELOR gently pushes PERSON 3 toward the exit,
then picks up PERSON 4 who becomes for angry.)
P 4 Don’t touch me! Don’t you dare touch me!
. I hate anybody who thinks they can touch me!
. No one will ever touch me again. I will hurt you
. before you can ever hurt me.
H Oh, I can’t get rid of that.
H It holds a lot of memories for me.
C What sort of memories?
H Bad ones! People have been terrible to me.
. Certain people have done terrible things to hurt me.
C You need to forgive them, and get rid of 7
. this hatred, bitterness and fear.
H It’s my protection against bad people.
C Just how does that protect you?
H If I don’t let anybody get close to me,
. then I won’t ever get hurt.
C But you’re not punishing THOSE people at all,
. you are only punishing yourself, and any good person
. that might be trying to get close to you.
H That doesn’t make any sense.
C It does. By pushing everyone away, you won’t be
. able to enjoy the good relationships that
. could develop. AND if you are hurtful to others
. before they can hurt you – then there will be even
. more people who will just want to hurt you back.
P 4 (to H with both fear & anger) Don’t listen to her.
. She doesn’t understand how good it feels to
. hate people. Right? You can’t trust anybody!
H (to C) I’m starting to see that I can trust you.
P 4 Nooooooo.
H (to C) I mean, I can really see that you ARE
. trying to help me. I suppose it really is worth
. the risk getting to know people.
C Right, because what is the worst that could happen?
P 4 (to H) You could get hurt!
H (to C) I COULD get hurt, but – then I might see
. that those people - probably have problems
. in THEIR lives, maybe even similar to the ones
. that I’ve experienced... Out it goes!
(COUNSELOR gently pushes PERSON 4 toward the exit.)
H Wow, that really felt good.
C That just leaves this one. 8
(COUNSELOR picks up PERSON 5.)
P 5 (brags to C) I have a better job than you,
. and I have earned a lot of money, so I’m so
. much better than you. I drive a fast sports car,
. and go on fancy trips, so I’m way better
. than most people. Nee-ner-nee-ner.
H No way! I definitely need that! It’s mine.
. I work very hard for that. It shows people
. all my accomplishments. And I’m not done yet.
C That is pride and arrogance, and it’s wrong.
. THIS garbage smells most of all.
H Everyday - I go outside and pick up the garbage
. on my lawn so it will look neat. I even pick up
. the little bits that other people throw on my yard.
C Doing little things like that - will not compensate
. for the other bad things that you do.
H Pride is a good thing.
C Not this kind of pride.
P 5 (to C) I have earned degrees and awards
. for being the best. I have proven myself to be
. better than anyone. Everything that I have done –
. I have worked hard for. And just look at my house!
C (to H) You were given this house. You should be
. thankful, and give credit where credit is due.
H But this one is so close to my heart. It has
. too much sentimental value.
P 5 (grandly) I have created the world around me
. and I am invincible and oh – so – great.
H You’re right. I hear it, and I can see – it is
. the smelliest garbage of them all.
(COUNSELOR gently pushes PERSON 5 toward the exit.)
H (sighs) This really feels good. Thank you 9
. for helping. I mean, really, thank you.
C You’re welcome.
H And I am very thankful for the one who gave me
. this house. I really need to show my appreciation
. more. AND I need to take care of it as best
. as I can.
C So you won’t let it get that messy ever again?
H No! I’ve learned a lesson here. I’m definitely
. going to try to clean up the garbage as it happens.
(HOADER and COUNSELOR exit.)