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Seventy times Seven

by

M.A.K.

Allan Kardec Spiritist
Society of Massachusetts
52 Broadway
Somerville, MA, 02145
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INTRODUCTION

This is the story of a Turtle, its friend Shark, a Denis fish,
and four other Fish Friends. All of our characters live in the
Sea of Galilee. The Turtle, the oldest, has learned many things
about the happenings of that sea from its family, which has
lived in the same sea for two thousand years. As our little Fish
Friends and the Denis live their adventures, we will learn sto-
ries about the life of a fisherman called Simon Peter, the son
of Jonas.

The story happens in a school. Today they will sing a song about
Simon Peter, but many things happen during the day.

MR. FRANKLIN (TURTLE)
Play and sing the song about Peter.

1. TURTLE AND ITS SHARK FRIEND

As the music fades out, the Turtle and the Shark are talking.

FRANKLIN (TURTLE)
I love this song. It reminds me of my
great-grand-mother, who used to tell me
beautiful stories about Simon Peter and
Jesus, which happened here by the sea
of Galilee, more than two thousand
years ago.

Bruce, the Shark passes by, he is sad and walks with his eyes
down.

FRANKLIN
Hey, Bruce. How are you?

BRUCE (SHARK)
Oh! Hey, Frank. I am fine...

FRANKLIN
This must have been the weakest fine I
have ever heard.

Maybe, the Turtle could play with the kids and ask if they are
fine, and wait until they give a very energetic answer.

BRUCE
Ah..., Frank. Who am I trying to fool?
You know me very well.
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BRUCE (CONT.)
I had an argument with my friend at
work yesterday, and I am embarrassed to
meet with him today.
I know I should forgive him -- he is a
good friend -- but he always does the
same thing.
How many times am I supposed to for-
give?

2. PETER LEARNS TO FORGIVE 70 TIMES 7

The Turtle will begin to tell the story of how Peter learned to
forgive seventy times seven, but from behind of the “stage”, the
real characters will appear and re-enact the story.

FRANKLIN
Oh, Bruce. I think I can cheer you up
with a little story about Peter and Je-
sus that I learned from my great-grand-
mother.

BRUCE
Hooray! I feel better already. I love
the stories that you tell about Jesus.

FRANKLIN
One day, Jesus was walking by the
beach, and Peter and James were walking
together right behind him, when a poor
woman tried to pass in front of them to
speak with Jesus.

Peter and James walk from behind the “stage” and the woman comes
right after them.

JAMES
Stop! What do you want, woman?

WOMAN
(With a suffering look)
I... I want to speak with Jesus!

JAMES
Get out of here, woman.
What could you possibly understand of
the Master’s teachings?
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The woman recognizes her ignorance and turns around, walking to
the other way.

PETER
But, James, Jesus welcomes everyone.

JAMES
Peter, it is clear that you do not know
that it would be impossible to build a
kingdom if the Master were constantly
wasting time with ignorant people.

PETER
However, I am a simple fisherman, and
Jesus has accepted me.
Why would he reject anyone else?

JAMES
Peter, I do not want to discuss this
with you. I told you several times al-
ready. You wouldn’t understand.

FRANKLIN
You know, Bruce. Peter was feeling very
sad. His own friend did not consider
him very highly. James thought that Pe-
ter was too ignorant to understand.

Then, surprisingly, Jesus approaches James and Peter, and walks
towards the woman. The woman is crying. Jesus comforts her, and
then walks back to Peter and James and say:

JESUS
"Be careful not to despise these little
ones. I can guarantee that their angels
in heaven always see the face of my Fa-
ther, who is in heaven.

“Because the Son of Man has come to
save that which was lost.

James looks down and turns around, then Peter speaks with Jesus:

PETER
Jesus, today James hurt my feelings.
“How often shall my brother sin against
me and I forgive him? Up to 7 times?”
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JESUS
“I do not say to you up to 7 times,
Peter, but up to 70 times 7 times.

The characters disappear behind the stage, and Bruce and Frank-
lin start to talk.

BRUCE
I see, Frank. What Jesus really meant
is that we should always forgive.

FRANK
That’s right, Bruce.

BRUCE
Well... I am going to work now. Thank
you, very much for telling me this
story. I’ll make peace with my friend.

FRANK
Excellent, Bruce. I am glad for you.
Now I need to prepare the classroom,
because my students are coming. We sing
a song about Peter today. Why don’t you
come in the end of the class to watch?

BRUCE
Ok. That is a good idea. See you soon.
Bye, bye.

FRANKLIN
Great. See you soon. Bye bye.

3. STUDENTS ARRIVE

All students arrive, except Denis.

ALL FISH IN A SCHOOL SUBMARINE
(singing)
The waves of the sea go up and down, up
and down, up and down. The waves of the
sea go up and down, all year round.

FRANKLIN
Hello, my dear ones. How are you today?

ALL FISH (EXCEPT THE DENIS)
We’re fine, Mr. Franklin!
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FRANKLIN
Do you know what we’re doing today?

FLOW
We’re going to study about Simon Peter!

FRANKLIN
Very well, Flow.

Flow looks at herself in a mirror to congratulate herself.

FRANKLIN
So, before we start. Is everyone here?

ALL FISH
Yeah!

FRANKLIN
I can’t see Denis. Where is he?

4. FIRST ENEMY: FEAR

Denis (the TROUBLEMAKER) pretends to be a shark and scares the
other fish. Fraidy learns to forgive.

Sound effect from Jaws movie “Tu nun”...

FRAIDY (SCARED FISH)
I know what this sound means.
A Shark is near us!

Denis waves his fake fin and jumps out of the bushes.

ALL OTHER FISH
(Screams)
Ah...

DENIS
(Screaming)
Ah... hahahaha I got all of you!

ALL OTHER FISH
(Whining)
Oh... No! Ah... Not again... Why?
I should have known...

All kids are chattering, the class is a mess.
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FRANKLIN
Alright, alright. Everybody! Let’s make
the friendship circle.

FRAIDY
(standing,making a fit)
I don’t want to sit near Denis.

FRANKLIN
Oh, lil’Fraidy. I understand.
Why don’t you try to sit next to your
friend Flow, then?

It is important that we forgive our
friends every now and then if we want
to live surrounded by friends.

FRAIDY
Ok. I can do that.

FRANKLIN
Very well, Fraidy.

Now Denis, do you want to say something
to her?

DENIS
I am sorry, Fraidy.

FRANKLIN
Very good, Denis.

Do you forgive him, Fraidy?

SCARED
(timidly)
Yeah...

FRANKLIN
Great! So can put a sea star in front
of your name for making such a noble
gesture today and forgiving his friend.
Because the class today is also about
forgiveness.

Fraidy puts a star in front of her name.
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5. WHO KNOWS PETER?

FRANKLIN
Now let’s see who did their homework.
Who can tell me who Simon Peter was?

All fish raises their fins.

FRANKLIN
You, Grumpy.

GRUMPY (CRAB)
Peter was one of Jesus’ apostles.

FRANKLIN
Good.

Franklin may also ask the audience if anyone else knows anything
about Peter and want to help us.

FRANKLIN
What did Peter do?

DENIS
He was a fisherman and he used to fish
with his brother Andrew.

FRANKLIN
Very good. Who knows where Peter lived?

FRAIDY
Peter lived right here in Carpharnaum,
in the north of the Sea of Galilee. He
hosted Jesus in his house many times.

FRANKLIN
Good job. And who knows how Peter and
Jesus met for the first time?

GEORGE (THE “CURIOUS” CATFISH)
Peter came to this sea one day to work,
but the beach was full of people that
came to see the new prophet.

Then, from the middle of all those peo-
ple a woman shouted!
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WOMAN
Please, help me take my child to the
Prophet because she is sick!

Please, help me!

PETER
I’ll help you, woman.

I want to see if this Prophet is really
all they say he is.

Peter takes the child and bring her to Jesus. But before he
comes too close, Peter says:

JESUS
“Simon, son of Jonas. Today you are a
fisherman of fish, but from now on I’ll
call you Peter which means ‘stone’ and
you will become a fisherman of men.“

And then, Jesus cure the little child. And the woman gets her
child back from Peter.

WOMAN
It’s a miracle, my daughter is healed.

GEORGE (THE “CURIOUS” CATFISH)
Peter is left without words. Peter did
not go to work that day, he stayed on
the beach until night came thinking
“Who was that man? How did he know my
name? What is a fisherman of men?”

FRANKLIN
Wow. Excellent. Anyone else?

FLOW
Peter healed a man over 40 years of age
who had been crippled from birth with
the only words “Silver and Gold I do
not have, but what I have I give to
you. In the name of Jesus Christ of
Nazareth, walk.”

FRANKLIN
Fantastic! Last one...
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Taz (the Kaboom-fish) raises his hand. It is his time to speak,
but Denis will jump ahead of him.

DENIS
Peter walked on water, Mr. Franklin!

TAZ
(Out-of-control rage)
Mr. Franklin! It was my turn to speak.
Denis has already spoken.

He always does that. He has no respect
for others and deserves to be pun-
ished!!

The Denis and the Taz threaten to fight each other.

FRANKLIN
Oh, come on. Have you forgotten that we
are in the friendship circle?

Denis, did you forget to raise your
hand?

DENIS
I forgot. I am sorry.

TAZ
He always has an excuse!

FRANKLIN
Taz let’s have a pop-quiz.

(Looking at audience)
If you have never interrupted someone
before, raise your hand?

If the children raise their hands Mr. Franklyn may say that Je-
sus was right, we should be like these children.

FRANKLIN
You see, Taz. Even yourself did not
raise your hand. Should we forgive
Denis this time?

TAZ
Alright, alright. I forgive him.
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FRANKLIN
Very good. This is an excellent demon-
stration of charity. You will get a
star for that.

Taz puts a star in front of his name.

FRANKLIN
Let’s have a short break now. When you
come back we will sing our song.

6. BREAK TIME

All FISH leave the stage and the SHARK comes back to talk.

BRUCE
Hello, Frank!

FRANKLIN
Hi, Bruce. You’re early.

BRUCE
I know, I am on my break at work. I
came to tell you that I made peace with
my friend. We were laughing about what
happened.

FRANKLIN
Good for you.

BRUCE
So. What time is the show?

FRANKLIN
The kids are on their break right now.
We will start when they come back.

BRUCE
Oh, my... I might be late then, because
I have a lot of work today.

FRANKLIN
Oh. Don’t worry Bruce, I understand.

BRUCE
Is there anything else that I can help
with?
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FRANKLIN
Sure. Can you help me put a sign in
that dangerous place. I don’t want the
children going near there.

BRUCE
Consider it done, Frank. I will see you
later. Bye, bye.

FRANKLIN
Bye bye, Bruce.

7. FORBIDDEN ADVENTURE

During the break-time the Denis take the other fish to a forbid-
den area and they are almost hit by a boot. They all run back to
the classroom scared and learn a lesson about complaining and
curiosity. They also forgive Denis for putting them in risk.

DENIS
Come with me guys, I know a very cool
place I wanted to show you. Come… Come…

GRUMPY
No! Here we go again! Your ideas always
get us in trouble.

DENIS
No, trust me this time! I won’t get you
in trouble; it’s a really cool place, I
am sure you guys will love it…

GEORGE
Why should we trust you? Where are you
taking us anyway?

DENIS
Come on… Stop being so scared… I know
you are curious! Besides this is an
awesome place with a great view.

TAZ
Alright, ok, ok! We are going with you,
but if anything goes wrong, it’ll be
your fault.
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FLOW
Ok, let’s go quick then, ‘cause we have
to be back before the break is over – I
just don’t wanna get in trouble.

DENIS
Ok, ok, quick! Follow me then…

On their way to this forbidden area, they are almost hit by a
boot that fell off from a fisherman’s boat…

FRAIDY
On my GOD! I knew we shouldn’t trust
you. This thing almost killed us...

GEORGE
What is it anyway?

GRUMPY
I told you this was not a safe place to
be! It’s dirty and those people don’t
even think of us, throwing their trash
at us, polluting the ocean… This was
really a bad idea. It’s all your fault
Denis.

TAZ
That’s it! I am telling Mr. Franklin.

George, Grumpy and Taz turned their backs and headed back to the
classroom…

DENIS
Oh, no! Please don’t…

They finally get to the classroom.

FRANKLIN
Hey children, why are you swimming so
fast? What happened?

TAZ
Mr. Franklin. Denis took us to a for-
bidden area!

GRUMPY
Yes, and he almost got us hurt by a gi-
ant boot!
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DENIS
No! No! They are lying I did not do
anything.

FRANKLIN
Ok, ok. Calm down. It is time to resume
our class. Let’s make the friendship
circle again.

The fish friends make their circle.

FRANKLIN
Now tell us what happened. Who will
start?

GEORGE
Well... It’s all Denis’S fault. He in-
sisted that we should go to this for-
bidden area.

FRANKLIN
Did he? And, by any chance did he have
a hook in your mouths? Or did you let
your curiosity lead you astray?

GEORGE
I guess I was curious to see this place
too.

FRANKLIN
I bet you were. You know, Peter once
was asked who did he think Jesus was.
He was inspired by a good Spirit when
he answered: “You are the Christ, the
Son of the living God." But a few min-
utes later, when Jesus told them what
was going to happen to him in the fu-
ture, that he would suffer in the hands
of men, Peter was now inspired by an
evil Spirit and he said: “Never, Lord!
-- This shall never happen to you!"

ALL FISH
Oh... We understand now, Mr. Franklyn.
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FRAIDY
We receive good and bad suggestions
from our friends, and we need to learn
to follow only the good ones.

GRUMPY
(Ashamed. Trying to
change subject.)
Mr. Franklin I have something to say.

ALL
Here we go again.

GRUMPY
This would have never happened if the
humans did not pollute our ocean!

FRANKLIN
How so?

GRUMPY
Humans are filthy. They throw every-
thing that they don’t use any more in
our oceans. Plastic bags become danger-
ous traps. And today a boot almost hit
us like a bomb.

FRANKLIN
And what can you do?

GRUMPY
I will complain! I will complain to the
head of the fish school. I will com-
plain to the president of this sea. And
I will complain to the supreme whale
council!

FRANKLIN
O lil’GRUMPY.

Complaining is like walking sideways.
It does not take you anywhere, it only
makes the march longer. Why don’t you
do instead, like Jesus did.

GEORGE
What did Jesus do?
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FRANKLIN
In Jesus’s last moments, he was denied
three times by Peter, he was abandoned
by his friends, and yet he said: “Fa-
ther, please forgive them, because they
don’t know what they are doing.”

GRUMPY
Oh, I get it. We should forgive the Hu-
mans, because maybe they do not know
they are harming themselves. Instead of
judging them, we should try to teach
them how to protect the environment.

FLOW
That’s right. And we should start with
the little ones.

(Looking at audience)
Because we know kids love this planet
and all the animals, and us “fish”,
right kids?

FRANKLIN
Very well. So all of you have really
learned something today. There is only
one thing missing.

GEORGE
What is missing?

SCARED
I think I know. We need to forgive
Denis for putting our lives in danger.

FRANKLIN
Exactly. So do you guys forgive him?

CRAB, GEORGE
Yes, Mr. Franklin.

FRANKLIN
So you know what to do.

All fish put another star in the score board and come back to
the teacher. So now there are seven sea stars on the board.
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8. PETER GIVES THE FINAL MESSAGE

The Taz gets angry and refuses to forgive.

TAZ
What?! I am not going to forgive him
this time. Look! This is the seventh
time he has caused us trouble, today
ONLY.

TAZ (CONT’D)
I am not going to be weak this time. He
is taking advantage of us. Who does he
think he is? How many times do we have
to forgive him?

All the fish are next to the teacher, except for the Denis. He
will say that he does not need anyone, that he is strong and
they are weak because they forgive. But then he will learn a
lesson from the shark and from Peter.

DENIS
You are all weak and coward. I am
strong and brave.

I do not need you.

And I don’t want to know how many times
you need to forgive me, because I don’t
need your forgiveness.

Ha! Imagine that... How many times you
need to forgive me?

At this moment, Bruce - the shark - arrives, and stays behind
the Denis.

BRUCE
I know the answer for that one!

DENIS
(without looking)
Haven’t you heard? I don’t wanna know!

All fish make a face of scare.

DENIS
You see....
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BRUCE
Excuse me.

DENIS
(without looking still)
Not now! I am talking.

You are all weak and scared of me.
That’s why you forgive me.

FRANKLIN
I’m sorry, Denis, but we are not afraid
of you or of anybody.

The teacher makes a sign to the Denis and Denis looks back and
see the shark behind him.

DENIS
Aaaaah!!

Denis runs away in circles.

BRUCE
Wait. Excuse me. Calm down.

The shark runs after him trying to calm him down.

Finally, the Denis runs to the teacher and his friends.

FRANKLIN
I tried to tell you, Denis. We are not
afraid of you or of anybody, because we
are all friends. Bruce, and his shark
family, has been a friend of my family
for a long, long time.

DENIS
I am sorry, Mr. Franklin. And this time
I reeaaly mean it. I thought he was go-
ing to eat me. I am sorry, my friends.
I should not have done all that I did
to you. Please, forgive me.

They give a fish-hug to each other altogether.

ALL FISH
Fish hug. Fish hug. We forgive you,
Denis, because we love you.
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BRUCE
That is lovely!
Now let me tell you something about
forgiveness. It takes great courage and
real strength to forgive someone.
Yesterday, a friend hurt my feelings.
Since I am stronger than him, it would
be easier for me just to knock him over
with my tail.
But then, I would not have solved the
problem. Instead, he would hate me, and
would try to revenge, it would just
make the problem bigger.
By forgiving him, I had to defeat my
self-pride, it took a lot of courage,
but in the end, I kept a good friend.

FRANKLIN
Thank you, Bruce, for sharing.

FRANKLIN (CONT’D)
We should always forgive whoever tres-
passes against us because we all need
forgiveness for our own faults.

I always think about what Jesus said in
his last moments on Earth as an incar-
nated Spirit. He said: Father, forgive
them, because they don’t know what they
are doing.

As the teacher says this last words, Peter comes out of the
stage, walking over the water.

GEORGE
Hey look! Who’s that man walking over
the water?

FRANKLIN
He is Peter. I think he came to give us
a final message for today’s class.
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PETER
When Jesus forgave us, I remembered
that being his closest friend, I have
denied knowing him three times, before
the rooster crowed.
From that moment on, I really under-
stood that I needed to forgive everyone
as many times as necessary, because I
also needed Jesus forgiveness and love
for ever.

Then, Jesus comes to meet Peter.

JESUS
Peter, ... do you love me?

PETER
Jesus, you know that I love you!

JESUS
Yes, I do.
Peter, you have fought the good fight.
You have tended my sheep.
And now, I see you have overcome your
fears, you’re walking over the waters.

PETER
Oh Master, that is because you loved me
so much, I just tried to love you back,
by loving all these little ones.

JESUS
You did well, my friend.

Looking at the public, Jesus says:

And you, all of you “Do you love me?”
-- (pause) -- “Then, tend my lambs.”

--- THE END ---