Sunday message, 11th December – Trinity All Age Nativity: Mary’s Christmas Story

Today for our nativity we will retell the Christmas story through Mary’s eyes as we step back through the pages of our storybook. Together with Mary we will remember the events of the Christmas story as she recalls them to her 3 year old son Jesus.
Before we start, let us pray together.

Mary’s Christmas Story
Stage is set with a chair; an adult Mary with child reads the story as younger or other actors play the scenes out in front of large storybook.

Mary enters calling out for Jesus
Mary – “Jesus, Jesus. There you are, come and have a hug”
Jesus sits on her lap
Jesus – “Mam, can you tell me my story”
Mary – “Of course. How you were born is my favourite story!”
Mary opens a book and starts to read (turns reading light on)
It all started on an ordinary day.
Young Mary enters to story book with broom/light on
I was in the kitchen doing some chores, when suddenly the room was filed with a bright light. I was scared at first but a voice that was gentle and strong said, “Do not be afraid”. As I looked, I saw an angelic figure, who said he had a message for me from God.
Angel appears/light on/sprinkle with sparkles
He said:
Angel – “Don’t be afraid, Mary, God has chosen you to give birth to a son. You must call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; He will be King over Israel and His kingdom will never die”.

I was amazed, but puzzled too. “Excuse me”, I said, “But I can’t have a baby, I’m not married yet”. The angel just smiled and said, “God’s Holy Spirit will overshadow you and your baby will be holy-God’s son!”

Wow! I could hardly speak, but I managed to say, “Yes, I am God’s servant, let it happen exactly as you say”.
Then woosh! The angel disappeared! Angel disappears

I was so excited – I was going to have a baby you, Jesus! But what would Joseph say? So when Joseph came to see me, this news would not be what he was expecting!
Enter Joseph
I tried to explain it all to him, about the angel and the baby but Joseph did not believe me. He got upset and would not talk to me.
Joseph turns his back on Mary
This made me upset too. I went for a walk.
Mary leaves stage
and wondered what would happen. But I need not have worried for God had a plan to look after all three of us as a family.

That night
Joseph lies down with blanket
when Joseph was asleep,
Angel appears/sprinkles
God sent an angel to him to explain what was going on. He was told not to worry because my baby really was God’s son.
Angel disappears
It was about this time when we had some fantastic news from my cousin Elizabeth. She was so happy because she was going to have a baby too.
I went to stay with Elizabeth and when we met she knew that the baby I was carrying was a special gift from God for our world.
Joseph leaves sleeping position during this song

Sing – Tell out my soul, the greatness of the Lord
Mary: Then not long before you were due to be born there was a big announcement that a census was going to take place. A census is a big count up of all the people in the land.

Group of soldiers make an entrace, Roger will give trumpet sound. March in stand across the front, turn to face congregation, Ben announcment
Roman soldier:
Pay heed to this Decree from Caesar Augustus.
A census will be taken of the entire Roman Empire.
Everyone living in the Roman Empire will need to be counted.
This is by order of Caesar Augustus.
There cannot be exception to this rule.
Everyone of you must tracel to your ancestral home where you will be registered.
Make your plans and preparations.
Now is the time to make haste and travel!
Now this meant that everyone had to go to their ancestral home, the place where their family originally came from. Well, for Joseph and I that meant we had to go to Bethlehem.
It was a long and hot journey.

While we sing – Mary and Joseph travel along top balcony and enter downstairs organ side and sit on chairs in front of book covered by brown blanket
Remain seated to sing: Little Donkey
Mary: When we got to Bethlehem, it was busy and bustling with people
SO MANY PEOPLE – Faces on sticks
There was no space to stay. In the end, Joseph found us a place in a stable. It was dry and warm. So you were born soon after we arrived. Mary is given baby to hold
and from the moment we saw you Jesus, we loved you. But we knew that someone else loved you even more than we did. Our Father God loved you and gave you as a gift to the world. It had all been foretold by the prophet Micah.

Reading: Micah Ch5: 2-5
But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times. Therefore, Israel will be abandoned until the time when she who is in labour gives birth and the rest of his brothers return to join the Israelites. He will stand and shepherd his flock the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. And they will live securely, for then his greatness will reach to the ends of the earth. And he will be their peace.

Sing: Away in a Manger
Mary: Do you remember I told you that when you were born there were some strange visitors?
Can you remember who came to visit? Yes, shepherds.
Well, what a strange scruffy bunch they were. They came straight from the field where they had been looking after their sheep. They said that angels had told them that you had been born. Can you imagine the sheep, shepherds and angels. What a sight that must have been!
Sheep and shepherds – Drama by Sparks and Hazel
(Adapted from Christmas wrapped up)
Nar: Over 2000 years ago, in a country far away, lived some shepherds. They were looking afte their sheep.
(Shepherds stroke sheep)
Nar: Sometimes the sheep would try and run away….but the shepherds always brought them back.
(Sheep and shepherds mime this)
Nar: Sometimes a wolf would come and try and get a sheep, but the shepherds would chase the wolf away.
(Sheep mime being frightened, shepherds mime being brave)
Nar: Sometimes in the winter it got very cold and the sheep and shepherds would huddle very close around the fire.
(Shepherds and sheep mime being cold)
Nar: Sometimes in summer it was very, very hot and sunny and the shepherds would give the sheep lots to drink.
(Shepherds mime doing this)
Nar: It was hard being a shepherd
But sometimes it was fun
And sometimes – well, one time – it was absolutely amazing. It was a dark, dark night and the sheep and the shepherds were all asleep.
(Shepherds and sheep lie down)
There was a bright, bright light in the sky – brighter than the sun, moon and stars put together.
The shepherds woke up and were very frightened.
(Shepherds jump and act scared)
Nar: The sheep woke up too, but they weren’t frightened because they thought it wa daytime and just started to eat grass.
(Sheep wake and mime eating grass)
Nar: The shepherds looked up and saw a bright shining angel – a messanger from God.
(Shepherds point in wonder at the angel)
Nar: The angel said, “Don’t be afraid – I have come to tell you something really exciting. Today in the town of Bethlehem, a very special baby has been born. It’s Jesus – God’s own special son who will grow up to show everybody that God loves them. Listen carefull so you will know where to find the baby. You will find him wrapped in sheets of cloth and lying in an animals feeding box. I’m telling you so you know that is true.
Then they sky was full of angels praising God.

Sing: When Jesus came into the world (actions)
Mary: Then there were other visitors too, all very regal and they had an interesting story to tell.

Wise men follow
Scene: A group of wise men enter with a telescope, thumbing large books
WM1: Don’t you just hate it when this happens! You have it all worked out, you know, sorted into place, and low and behold it changes.
WM2: Yes, I know what you mean. All those constellations just as you expect them to be then all of a sudden there is a change!
WM3: Change! Change! What do you mean change! It’s not meant to change, not unless….
WM1&2: Unless what!
WM3: (in stage whisper) Unless there is a new…
WM3 (with a look of panic) Shhh…you know what it says; look it makes it quite clear!
WM3: (Picks up a large book and blows away talc dust) Here you are (reading). Abnormal changes in the star canopy can have different implications.
1. Large number of stars missing from the night sky – you have picked a cloudy night, please try later!
2. The stars seem further away than normal – try looking through the other end of your telescope!
3. Misting of the view – check for light interference from neighbours night lights, or fogging from deep breathing
4. New star in the sky – rare occurrence (see footnote no 12 below)
Footnote no 12: A new star in the sky can only mean one thing…
WM1&2: (Getting excited) YES, what does it mean?
WM3: (Clearing his throat) May I continue? It means that a theomorphic, gloriatum, nobliscus, imperium, divinical happening has taken place!
WM1: (looking puzzled) A what, happening?
WM3: (talking slowly) A regally…maj…
WM1: (Interrupting) Yes, I heard you but what do you mean
WM2: (Astonished) He means a new king has been born
WM1: Wow, a new king in my lifetime, who’d have ever of thought of it. That’s canny! What a privilege! (Pulling himself to stand straighter)
WM2: What an honour (bowing slightly)
WM3: (Kneeling reverently) Not just a privilege and honour, but a responsibility! We must follow!
WM1&2: We will follow the star until we can bow down and worship the new king! (Turn and move towards stable scene)
WM1, 2 &3 (Bow together saying) YOUR MAJESTY!
Mary: They came with gifts that tell another story, gifts that show God’s plan for your future
Gold – a gift for a King
Frankinscense – is given as an offering to God
Myrrh – is put on people we love when they die
They told us about how a star had directed their journey

Sing- I want to see your baby boy

Mary: Someone else told us about your future too. When Joseph and I presented you at the temple, we met a very old man called Simeon. God was with Simeon and he gave us a prophecy from God that said you are going to be the salvation of every nation everywhere, and you will be God’s light in all the world.
In years to come people will follow you and find that Father God loves them too. All over the world people will pray for the light of salvation to come in their towns, cities and countries. Your story will be known all over the world. Jesus, Messiah, Saviour, Light of the World.

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