One woman’s comedic journey from believer to blasphemer |

One woman’s comedic journey from believer to blasphemer

Writer/performer Thea Deley impersonates a pew’s worth of characters from her religious childhood in her one-woman comedy, “Jesus Loves You! (but hates me)” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, at Thunder River Theatre in Carbondale.

Says playwright Marty Durlin, “Thea Deley has created a brave show — funny, serious and moving. As she indicts the religious right that warped her childhood, she also finds compassion for all concerned. Clever and deeply felt.”

Hailed as “Paonia’s Queen of Comedy” by the Glenwood Springs Post Independent, Deley weaves together skits, spoof films, live music and game shows to relate how she went from believer to blasphemer.

Meet the Sunday School teacher who warned Deley not to brush with “Satan’s toothpaste.” Watch commercials for products like “Stoning Kits.” Compete for prizes in games such as “Bible Feud.”

“I laughed so hard I fogged up my glasses!” says audience member Kari Schoonhoven.

But it’s not all fun and games. Being threatened with hell and damnation is pretty scary stuff for a kid. “By sharing — and laughing at — my own story,” Deley says, “I replace the fear and superstition of my childhood with my new religion: love and personal responsibility.”

Says The Metropolitan student reporter Kailyn Lamb, “It is not an everyday occurrence that I go to a comedy expecting religion-bashing and instead find myself healing my own grievances against religion.”

And Denver minister Brian Henderson says, “Amazing, provocative, stunning and sharp. Thea’s articulation of what it means to be human and to love couldn’t have come across any more clearly.”

Advance tickets are $15 general/$10 student, and $18 general/$13 at the door. Mature audiences only (17+). Doors open at 7 p.m.; show at 7:30 p.m.; Tickets and show trailer at

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