The packed house at Lady of the Graces Church at Janakpuri sat in pin-drop silence as the clock struck 9 on Friday morning. A couple of minutes of quiet later, the violin buzzed to life as did the organ-rich choir praising their lord Jesus in Hindi.
It was a morning to remember for the members of the Christian community on Friday as they gathered at the tiny church to pray, to sing and to remember Jesus Christ and his crucifixion.
The act rolled on after the music died down with Jesus arriving before the masses only to be dragged away by a group of soldiers dressed in black. He was whipped and thrashed, forced to wear a crown of thorns and crucified on a bamboo cross and left to die by the soldiers.
The gathering watched with pain and joined the choir, which expertly kept filling the pauses with soul-touching music.
Benedict Lazarus - who has been associated with the church for close to 11 years and was the man who produced magic with his violin on Friday - calmly puts down the perfect synchronisation on stage to hectic practice sessions. "All of us have our professional and educational commitments. However, we managed to make time," he said.
For 49-year-old Jaichand Ekka, on the other hand, it was a déjà vu with a difference. Last year too, he played Jesus. "My son was there with me last time as one of the other characters in the re-enactment. This time it is just me," Ekka, who is also an employee at the page and accounts office in the ministry of home affairs, said.
Ekka, who originally hails from Jharkhand and has been a resident of Delhi since 1987, added that they had put in around two weeks of preparations to make the re-enactment a success.
Ekka, for his part, stood tall in front of the church full of people, playing his part as Jesus to perfection. Other churches across the city, more or less witnessed similar scenes with fasting and abstaining members of the community gathering there for service.