Ted & Co. satirical drama to address peace and conflict resolution at AVDS conference

Audience members will be entertained while also being challenged with difficult truths when well-known actor Ted Swartz and partner Tim Ruebke of Ted & Company TheatreWorks (Harrisonburg, Va.) present the satirical drama I’d Like to Buy an Enemy at 7 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 14, at Hesston Mennonite Church on the Hesston College campus.

The performance is part of the college’s weekend Anabaptist and Vision Discipleship Series (AVDS) conference with the theme “Overcoming Evil: Ordinary People Making a Difference.” Admission to the show is free for conference registrants and $12 for the general public at the door.

Ted&Co PosterI’d Like to Buy an Enemy is a hilarious and poignant satire that explores peace, justice and the American way of a highly militarized presence in the world. The show encourages confrontation of the fear that overcomes the culture and offers applicable methods for working toward peace and justice locally and around the world.

Prominent Christian author and speaker Brian McLaren offered praise for the show: “People will laugh – but as they do, they will learn, and perhaps even gain the courage to confront some truths that most of us manage to avoid.”

Swartz is a writer, actor and owner and artistic director of the professional touring company Ted & Company TheatreWorks. As a seminary graduate, actor and comedian, Swartz melds crucial issues of the church and society with humor. He is the creator or co-creator of more than a dozen plays.

Ruebke provides experience in conflict resolution to the show. He is the director of the Community Mediation Center or Fairfield Center (Harrisonburg) where he works to advance understanding and effective planning. He also serves with FEMA as an Alternative Dispute Resolution Advisor, as a mediator for the United States Postal Service’s Resolve Employment Disputes, Reach Equitable Solutions Swiftly (REDRESS) program and is certified by the Supreme Court of Virginia as a mentor mediator and trainer. Ruebke is a 1988 Hesston College graduate and a former Hesston resident.

The 2015 AVDS conference will encourage participants to follow Jesus on the path of overcoming evil with good, and be a guide to understanding the biblical foundations for justice and the peace of Jesus to overcome the evil that is common to all. The keynote speaker will be internationally known voice for peace and 2008 Nobel Peace Prize nominee, Father John Dear.

A full weekend schedule and registration can be found here or call the Hesston College Alumni and Church Relations Office at 620-327-8105.