Kieran Angelini


Drinking in Church is a comedy featuring two low-level criminals—Snapper, an alcoholic atheist, and Kokomo, an agnostic searching for meaning in his life.

At the opening, the two friends bungle the robbery of a powerful crime boss, Mustafa O’Neill, an Irish-American catholic turned Muslim. As contrition for the crime, and to save their lives, Snapper tells Mustafa of a new scheme that will net them a fortune: the kidnapping of a champion show dog from a wealthy woman, Miriam Case. Mustafa agrees—on the condition that they bring him the dog at midnight. Or else.

Snapper and Koko take refuge in the church across the street from Mrs. Case’s home and plan the crime. While in the church, a young woman, Robbie, enters. She is a devout catholic and works for Mrs. Case. But when Robbie learns of the crime, rather than turn them in, she offers to help.

Robbie then proceeds to take over the operation, planning the crime herself. This angers Snapper, who doesn’t trust her. Koko, on the other hand, is smitten, and will follow her anywhere.

The kidnapping is attempted, and although Snapper and Koko get the dog, they trip the house alarms, which alert the police. They scramble back to the church for cover.

While there, Koko learns that Snapper has betrayed him, and is leading him to Mustafa…and his death.

During the furor over this revelation, the police wheel a gurney from the house holding the body of Mrs. Case. We learn that Robbie killed her and, even more shocking, that Mrs. Case is actually her mother.

Koko turns against Robbie, which infuriates her. Already wracked with guilt about her mother’s death, she steals the dog from the two men, places him on the altar, and is about to sacrifice him.

Then, through the stained glass windows, a glaring light floods the church, creating a kaleidoscope of colors and shapes--accompanied by a thunderous roar. Robbie looks up at the light, mesmerized. She thinks it is the light of God, and believes that he has come for her. She kills herself rather than the dog.

Turns out, it was just the searchlights of a helicopter.

In the end, Snapper apologizes to Koko, says he will tell Mustafa the truth, and deal with the consequences himself. Koko forgives him, but says they will go to Mustafa together. Their relationship endures, and is strengthened, due to the power of forgiveness and redemption.

Copyright 2009 Kieran Angelini
All Rights Reserved