FC Summer 2023

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FPA’s Latest Work Takes Audiences Further Up & Further In Their Own Faith Journeys

Earlier this year, Fellowship for Performing Arts’ latest stage production – C.S. Lewis On Stage: Further Up & Further In – came to The Lexington Opera House near the campus of the University of Kentucky. And due to the generosity of FPA donors, tickets for UK students, faculty and staff were priced at just $5 each.

Because of that, the Thursday night, student-only performance sold out weeks in advance. Another performance was added on Friday for students and the community. It sold out as well.

Among those in attendance on Thursday was a young male student who had expressed his skepticism about Christianity.

After the show, FPA’s Founder and Artistic Director Max McLean – who stars as Lewis – visited with a group of 20 students at The C.S. Lewis House ministry near campus. The young man mentioned above joined the group.

“The play recounts an exchange of letters Lewis had with an American skeptic,” Max said. “This young man wanted to know what prompted me to include the back-and-forth letters in the show, and were they real? I told him it was based on a real exchange.”

“Among those in attendance on Thursday was a young male student who had expressed his skepticism about Christianity.”

The young man said he teared up several times during the show. He said it felt as if Lewis was reading his personal journal entries in those letters: the questions were the same, the skepticism was the same and the desire for truth was the same.

“Then the young man told us he took ‘the leap’ during our show – to believe in Jesus as his Lord and Savior’,” Max said. “We praised God, and I told him exactly what Lewis said in response to the letter of conversion in the play. ‘A hundred thousand welcomes. Expect a counterattack. Don’t be surprised when it comes. Learn to pray.’”

The director of The Lewis House told Max the young man recently was baptized!

We’ve written before about the unprecedented impact Further Up & Further In is having at almost every tour stop. Audiences are so engaged that it is common for some people to exclaim, gasp or applaud mid-scene. And the Holy Spirit appears to be using the production in the faith journeys of those who attend. Here are just a few of the comments we’ve received:

“It wakens the soul to an inescapable desire for relationship with our Creator.”

“Inspired, encouraged and spiritually challenged to journey further up and further in!”

“Powerful, beautifully presented, amazing heart impact.”

“I was edified and engaged, as well as reminded of why I have found Lewis such a persuasive Christian apologist.”

“Our faith was bolstered by attending the performance.”

“Developing Further Up & Further In was a three-year process that required about $1.5 million in upfront development costs,” Max said. “We are so grateful for our Fellowship Circle of supporters who made this production possible and for allowing us to offer steeply discounted student tickets so people like the young man at UK can have a life-changing experience.”


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A full house rises to its feet following Max’s University of Kentucky performance of Further Up & Further In.

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