Christmas miracles really do happen! If you attended last evening’s performance of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, you witnessed one. For most miracles, a lot of prayer, preparation, and persistence precede the actual event. Last evening was no exception. Our youthful actors and actresses and their parents spent hours memorizing lines, attending rehearsals, and balancing already busy schedules. They braved falling temperatures in the stage wings, makeup brushes and lipstick applicators, and costume challenges. Our young directors Eric Adamcik and Ryan Rotella learned how much organization, flexibility, and enthusiasm are needed to manage twenty some younger participants. The stage management by Becca Millett and Joseph Hutzenbiler changed the fellowship hall stage into the real world of the Herdman children. Transformations were complete as the black eyes, pink cheeks and reddened lips were applied by our make up artists, Maggie Bendy, Anna Milam and even the Yates’ babysitter (who was Imogene in her church’s production several years) with the extra help of the stage mothers.
A village of elders facilitated the production in ways that the kids may never really fully appreciate until they are parents and adults themselves. Jeff Pless provided the invisible actor on the stage with his light and sound magic. Barbara Adamcik provided the artwork for the posters and programs so beautifully printed by the Bendy’s United Printers in addition to mentoring the student directors. Tricia Bell sent out many e-mails providing a communication link. Stage Moms Extraordinaire (SMEs) Angela Partelow , Kathryn Oakes, Laura Stockdale, and Ruth Yates spent hours coordinating costumes, props, set pieces, and providing final assistance the evening of the performance to get all the little ones on and off the stage in fine form and on cue. Linda Judge-McRae and her army of parents made sure the little tummies were satisfied the afternoon of the Christmas choir concert and play. Parents and Grandparents encouraged, cajoled and possibly even gave a bribe or two to encourage their children to participate. The effect was miraculous, as miraculous as the Herdmans’ transformation.
As for me, and I imagine for many of you, to experience Christmas through the eyes and actions of children is the most wonderful gift; we laugh, we are tearfully touched, and we are reminded of the innocence brought into the world on that first Christmas with the Christ Child. Blessings to all of you during this Advent season and thank you for sharing your children with all of us at Westminster.