|The Christmas Pageant:|
A tradition that never grows old.
This morning, near the end of our church’s Advent Celebration service, children paraded down the aisle, dressed in the familiar attire of shepherds, wise men, and angels. The pint-sized actors gathered around a manger, where “Mary” gently tended the baby Jesus and “Joseph” helped her keep watch over him.
Watching that timeless scene unfold, I was reminded of my very favorite Christmas story, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson. First published in 1972, the story probably wouldn’t clear all of today's “politically-correct” hurdles as there is something in it to offend just about everyone at least once. There are church gossips and busybodies, there are schoolyard name-calling and bullying. A good case could be made that it contains child abuse and even—heaven forbid!—cruelty toward a cat.
|You can see from my copy|
of this book it is well read.
Yes, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever isn’t your typical, reverent Christmas story. But I think it’s one of the best because it deals with an imperfect world and the imperfect people who inhabit it. Ultimately, it is the story of transformation and redemption. And, after all, isn’t that what Christmas is about?
Have a favorite Christmas story you’d like to recommend?