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Soul Purpose Collection

Identifier: sc.2013.08.30

Scope and Contents

This collection contains 10 boxes containing master copies of all the plays as well as esssays written by John Steven Paul, cast lists, performance programs, prop lists, student papers, correspondace, and images. Not all of the documents under the Soup Purpse History Archives section are listed, as well as other documents for the Soul Purpose Archives section, but can be found within the Valparaiso University Archives and Special Collections.


  • Creation: 1987 - 2009


Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on the use of this collection. Access to the collection is in accordance with the policies of the Valparaiso University Archives and Special Collections, Valparaiso University.

Conditions Governing Use

Requests to reproduce or publish material from the collection should be directed to the Valparaiso University Archives and Special Collections, Valparaiso University.

Biographical / Historical

Soul Purpose, the liturgical drama troupe of Valparaiso University, began by performing plays by David H. Kehret and transitioned to developing original plays based on biblical texts like Luke, Matthew, John and many others. Founded and directed by John Steven Paul (1951-2009), a professor of Theatre at Valparaiso University, the Soul Purpose troupe performed for masses of people in congregations, schools, conferences, and other settings between 1987 and 2009. The Soul Purpose group traveled for many of their performances and visited various cities throughout the continental United States. Additionally, Soul Purpose offered plays, workshops, and other events at the Institute for Liturgical Studies. The Soul Purpose troupe was disbanded with the unexpected death of John Steven Paul in 2009. Overall, the Soul Purpose collection contains 34 originally produced liturgical dramas and mulitiple adapted plays. Some info taken from The Soul Purpose Liturgical Drama and Essays page on Valpo Scholar.


10 Boxes (The Soul Purpose Collection consist of four subjects: History Archives, Archives Corpus Christi Myst'ries, and Master Copies. There are 96 labeled folders. All folders contain multiple documents. One box consist of photographs of the Soul Purpose group.) : Documents are either typed or hand written. ; 128.25 in x 10.25 in x 45 in

Language of Materials


Content List

All folders are listed here; however, some folders are generalized and contain multiple documents.

Box 1 - History Archives

Box 1 - History Archives
Folder 1: JSP- Funeral July 16, 2009; Folder 2: JSP Memorial September 26,2009; Folder 3: About JSP; Folder 4: JSP Selected Tributes and Condolences; Folder 5: Published David H. Kehret Plays vol. 1; Folder 6: Rules, Stage Manager Requirements, Logo, Prop list vol. 1; Folder 7: Songs vol. 1; Folder 8: Programs vol. 1; Folder 9: 1988-1989 vol. 1; Folder 10: 1990-1991 vol. 1; Folder 11: 1991-1992 vol. 1; Folder 12: 1991-1992 Press Clippings vol. 1; Folder 13: 1992-1993 vol. 1; Folder 14: 1993-1994 vol. 2; Folder 15; 1994-1995 vol. 2; Folder 16: 1995-1996 vol. 2
Box 2 - History Archives
Folder 1: 1996-1997 vol. 2; Folder 2:1997-1998 vol. 2; Folder 3: 1998-1999 vol. 2; Folder 4: 1999-2000 vol. 3; Folder 5: 2000-2001 vol. 3; Folder 6: 2000-2001 Programs vol. 3
Box 3 - History Archives
Folder 1: 2001-2002 vol.4; Folder 2: 2002-2003 vol.4; Folder 3: 2003-2004 vol.4; Folder 4: 2004-2005 vol.5; Folder 5: 2004-2005 Programs vol.5
Box 4 - History Archives
Folder 1: 2005-2006 vol.5; Folder 2: 2005-2006 vol.6; Folder 3: 2006-2007 vol.6; Folder 4: East Coast Trip 2007 vol.6; Folder 5: 2007-2008 vol.7; Folder 6: 2008-2009 vol.7; Folder 7: Princeton Trip vol.7
Box 5 - History Archives, Corpus Christi Myst'ries, Master Copies
Folder 1: Trip Planning 2007-2009 vol.7; Folder 2: Unknown Dates vol.7; Folder 3: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - General; Folder 4: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - Rehersal Report Forms; Folder 5: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - Abraham; Folder 6: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - The Shepherds' Play; Folder 7: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - Herod The Great; Folder 8: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - Lazarus; Folder 9: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - Deliverance of Souls: Resurrection; Folder 10: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - Costumes; Folder 11: Corpus Christi Myst'ries - Minutes/ Audition Forms; Folder 12: Master Copies; Folder 13: Master Copies cont.; Folder 14: Master Copies - Essays
Box 6 - Archives
Folder 1: 1-5-3 vol.1; Folder 2: And They Danced vol.1; Folder 3: And They Danced - Drafts vol.1; Folder 4: And They Pranced vol.1; Folder 5: An Eye for an Eye vol.1; Folder 6: Annie's Party vol.1; Folder 7: The Beginning of Good News vol.1; Folder 8: The Brother vol.1; Folder 9: Dear Mathew vol.1; Folder 10: Dear Mathew - Drafts vol.1; Folder 11: The Brother - The Prodigal Son Narratives vol.1; Folder 12: An Eye for an Eye vol.2
Box 7 - Archives
Folder 1: The First Witnesses vol.2; Folder 2: The First Witnesses - Drafts vol.2; Folder 3: A Fish Story vol.2; Folder 4: A Fish Story - Drafts vol.2; Folder 5: Fools vol.2; Folder 6: For the Sake of One vol.3; Folder 7: Forty Days vol.3; Folder 8: Go and See vol.3; Folder 9: The Hard Part vol.3; Folder 10: Hope and Freedom vol.3; Folder 11: Inauguration vol.3; Folder 12: Keep Awake vol.3; Folder 13: Leap of Faith vol.3
Box 8 - Archives
Folder 1: Locusts and Wild Honey vol.4; Folder 2: Locusts and Wild Honey - Drafts vol.4; Folder 3: The Man Born Blind vol.4; Folder 4: The Man Who was Not Far from the Kingdom of God vol.4; Folder 5: The Man Who was Not Far from the Kingdom of God - Drafts vol.4; Folder 6: Mathews, Manifold Grace vol.4; Folder 7: New Wine, Old Skins vol.4; Folder 8: Passion Plays vol.5; Folder 9: Paul and Silas in Prison vol.5; Folder 10: POOOOOFFFF vol.5; Folder 11:Ready? vol.5; Folder 12: Remembering Philip and James, Apostles vol.5
Box 9 - Archives
Folder 1: Remember This Day, Child vol.5; Folder 2: Take Off Your Shoes vol.5; Folder 3: That Cross vol.5; Folder 4: The Things that are God's vol.5; Folder 5: Tilling and Telling vol.6; Folder 6: The Wedding vol.6; Folder 7: What do You Think? vol.6; Folder 8: Widow, Brides, and Bridegrooms vol.7; Folder 9: Written of Your Heart vol.7; Folder 10: Zacchaeus: For the Lord He Wanted to See vol.7; Folder 11: Scripture Readings and General News Clippings vol.7
Box 10 - Images
One action image of "And They Danced" by John Steven Paul performance. Eleven images of the Soul Purpose group.
Soul Purpose Collection
In Progress
Megan N. Kelly
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Valparaiso University Special Collections Repository

1410 Chapel Drive
Valparaiso IN 46383 United States