Despite foul weather of biblical proportions a performance of the Easter Story went off without a hitch – despite Jesus, his disciples and the rest of the cast having to perform in raincoats.
Fending off the rain Soul by the Sea held their fourth annual open air play of Passion of the Christ outside St Peter’s Church in Brighton.
Enough rain to float an ark fell during most of the performance, but as if on cue the sun burst through the clouds at the moment Jesus was resurrected.
The play was opened by Richard Jackson, Bishop of Lewes.
Stephen Holdstock, 28, from Shoreham, who was in the audience said: “I think it is fantastic all the cast have shown such commitment and resilience – and the sun came out at exactly the perfect time.”
The cast put on a second performance in the late afternoon in full costume basking in the glorious sun.
Eduardo Alves, originally from Brazil, now studying English at the University of Brighton, said: “I am a Christian and it is important for us to share this story with people who do not know it - I think this can bring people to church when they see it.”
The play recounts the final days of Jesus’ life based on the accounts from the four gospels – including him casting the money changers from the temple, the last supper, his betrayal and trail, his crucifixion and finally his resurrection.
The play has a reputation for being bloody and brutal – especially the crucifixion scene.
Mr Holdstock said: “Sometimes showing how brutal the story can be while showing how hopeful the ending is makes it much more powerful.”
It is written and directed by James Burke-Dunsmore, who also returned to portray Jesus once again and this year's performance.
Mr Burke-Dunsmore made his 80th appearance as Christ and has religiously portrayed the role over 16 years - also appearing on screen.
He performed on Good Friday in Trafalgar Square in front of 40,000 people.
The crowd in Brighton was more modest, with just over one hundred people braving the rain to attend.
Fundraising was also held at the event, with extra funds going to Brighton-based charities Crossover and Off the Fence, as well as Jesus Street Shows in South Africa.