Contact: Carl Ellis
When I was serving in one local church we would have a Pick-Up Christmas Eve Pageant at our Christmas Eve Worship Service. During the children’s time, we would relive the Christmas Story sharing Scripture lessons and Christmas Carols as children of all ages would walk to their places at the manger. This was called a Pick Up Christmas Eve Pageant because we literally used children and adults who showed up and wanted to participate.
A few Sundays before Christmas Eve the announcement was made in the bulletin that we would be doing a Pick Up Christmas Even Pageant. Anyone wishing to be in the pageant should show up for practice.
The rehearsal was on Christmas Eve morning concluding with a pizza lunch. Christmas Eve afternoon those who wanted to stick around would make the set. Many mothers and fathers were thankful for the time they could spend alone finishing up last minute details. Children visiting from other communities who had missed out on the Christmas pageant in their own church were overjoyed they could take part. And Grandparents, who sometimes missed out seeing their grandchildren perform, were delighted to watch their grandson or granddaughter. One year we had a young mother, who had given birth to a son in November, volunteer to play Mary with her son being Jesus. Surprisingly enough the children were not jealous when an older person was part of the pageant because they loved the idea of a “real” baby playing Jesus.
I know this was done with a small budget, very low tech, and the acting one level above “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.” However, we were all amazed that in simplicity, like the simplicity of the birth of Jesus, the Christmas story once again came to life and our hearts were overwhelmed with the love and joy of Christmas.