Jonathan Swenson ’88 Posted on December 30th, 2011 by

Rev. Jonathan Swenson, ’88, is answering a new calling. Swenson, who split his time at Gustavus between the Psychology, Theater and Music departments is now traveling to churches, colleges, conferences and retreats throughout the country performing WITNESSES –, a one-man, 8-character dramatic presentation on the life of Jesus.

After nearly 20 years in parish ministry, Swenson felt God’s call to transition into a full-time drama ministry using his training and professional experience — both as an actor and as a pastor — to start “Paraphrase Theatre,” a Christian theater company based in Cedar Rapids, IA.

Witnesses, written by nationally known Christian playwright, Curt Cloninger, uses modern day settings to give fresh perspectives on Biblical characters whose lives were intertwined with that of Christ. The characters, both comedic and serious present Jesus not as a cold and distant figure, but as one who was intimately involved in the nitty-gritty of life.

Rev. Swenson will be performing Witnesses on the Gustavus campus later this spring. For more information about hosting a performance of WITNESSES at your church, you can contact Jonathan at or

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