Christmas Play 2016

Living Waters Christmas Play 2016 by Gareth Chilcoat


  • Mary
  • Joseph
  • Angel (costume idea: headlamp)
  • Magi 1
  • Magi 2
  • Herod (costume idea: Burger King crown)
  • Soldier 1 (costume idea: bike helmet and water gun)
  • Soldier 2 (costume idea: bike helmet and water gun)
  • Inn Keeper (costume idea: Airbnb notebook?)
  • Shepherd 1
  • Shepherd 2
  • Director

Magi 1: So, what are you in for?

Mary: What?

Shepherd 1: What did you do?

Mary: What do you mean? I’m here for the play.

Inn Keeper: The Christmas play. Oh yes, we know. We’re all here for the play.

Shepherd 1: (S)He means how bad were you to end up in this play?

Mary: How bad? I did something bad?

Magi 1: To end up in THIS play? Oh yes.

Mary: I don’t understand.

Shepherd 1: This is the ‘B’ play. The alternate. The day performance. The one no one goes to.

Soldier 2: All the good people get selected for the night performance.

Herod: It’s the Sunday School equivalent of detention.

Inn Keeper: You’ve got to do something pretty bad to end up in this play.

Mary: I don’t think I did anything bad. We just joined the church last week.

Magi 2: Oh, well maybe since you just joined they didn’t have any parts left in the good one.

Magi 1: That could be.

Mary: So all of you have done something bad?

Shepherd 1: Oh yes.

Shepherd 2: Terrible.

Herod: Shameless.

Mary: Like what?

Angel: I might have allegedly added salt to all the cookie exchange recipes.

Shepherd 1: Oh is THAT what happened. They tasted terrible. I wondered why everyone was extra thirsty that night.

Magi 1: I put the “crop” in crop walk. There was corn everywhere.

Joseph: I just found more corn kernels in my coat pocket yesterday.

Magi 2: I may painted a few additions to the advent mural this year. You could only see them when the light hit them just right.

Soldier 1: Yes, like whenever the lights were on. We all saw.

Inn Keeper: Did anyone see the free church daycare posters around town the same week as VBS? That was me.

Angel: I thought that was a record turnout. Also explains why there were no where near enough teachers and the general chaos that ensued.

Herod: Yes, the police had to be called. I saw three parents crying.

Director: Ok kids, settle down. Let’s all pretend someone is actually going to go to the performance this year and try to get through this thing. Try to hold your enthusiasm. Let me assign the parts.

Director: Angel, Joseph…

Joseph: No way. Me? Joseph!? Come on.

Director: You’ll make a fine Joseph. Try not to steal any of the props. Shepherd 1, Shepherd 2…

Shepherd 2: Again?

Director: Inn Keeper…

Magi 1: Hey ‘Inn Keeper’, where’s your donkey?

Director: Wise Magi 1.

Magi 2: Ha, ha!

Director: And there’s Wise Magi 2. Soldier 1, Soldier 2, Herod…

Herod: Really?

Director: You get to be an power-hungry ruler. You’re perfect for it.

Shepherd 2: That’s a little harsh.

Inn Keeper: Don’t worry about it. Trust me. The director doesn’t want to be here either.

Director: And you. New girl. You get to be Mary.

Mary: Mary? That doesn’t sound too bad.

Angel: Oh it’s a speaking part. Believe me. It’s bad.

Joseph: I think this play is written every year just to torture us.

Director: First rehearsal is next week. Do try not to lose your scripts every week. At least pretend you’re interested in doing a decent job.[Leaves]

Herod: Alright folks, you heard the director. Do not lose those scripts. I so decree under penalty of law.

Shepherd 2: Who put you in charge?

Soldier 1: He’s the king. He IS in charge.

Soldier 2: All hail the great king Herod.

Herod: That’s right, subjects. I’m in charge. I built the temple in Jerusalem and brought the mighty city to glory! You all owe me. What I say, goes.

Soldier 1: What a great ruler.

Soldier 2: So majestic and king-like.

Inn Keeper: We have to do everything you say?

Herod: Of course. All that I say, exactly as I say it. You’re either with us, or against us. There is nothing in between. Come on soldiers. That Narthex area is lacking order. The mighty fist of Rome will prevail! [Herod and the soldiers leave]

Angel: Is it just me, or were they acting really weird?

Shepherd 1: Woah, Angel, lower your voice! It’s booming.

Angel: Booming? I’m speaking normally.

Shepherd 2: I think I’ve lost something.

Shepherd 1: Yes, me too. I’m sure of it.

Shepherd 2: Like white and fluffy things that tend to wander away? With wool sweaters?

Shepherd 1: Yes, those. Let’s go look for those. [Shepherd 1 and Shepherd 2 leave]

Angel: What are they talking about?

Inn Keeper: You are really being loud. Hey, does anyone want to stay in my garage?

Magi 2: What?

Mary: [to Joseph] I think I love you.

Joseph: What do you mean ‘you love me’? You just met me.

Angel: What is happening! I don’t understand!

Mary: [to Angel] My ears! Could you stop shouting?

Magi 1: Wait. Hold on everyone. I think I know what’s happened. Somehow we’ve taken on the personalities of the people we’ve been assigned to in the Christmas story.

Magi 2: That’s not a thing!

Joseph: You mean, we’re acting just like they would have acted? In real life?

Magi 1: Exactly.

Magi 2: There’s no way that’s a thing!

Inn Keeper: [to Mary and Joseph] I really, really would love it if you would stay in my garage tonight.

Magi 1: See?

Joseph: OK, that’s weird.

Mary: How long do you think it will last?

Magi 1: Until the play’s over I guess.

Joseph: Well that doesn’t sound too bad.

Mary: Except that I’m pregnant.

Inn Keeper: You’re not pregnant.

Magi 2: You can’t be pregnant.

Angel: It’s true. She really is pregnant. I was going to tell her in a dream.

Joseph: How can you be pregnant. That’s impossible! It’s just a play.

Angel: Anything is possible with the Lord.

Magi 1: Well this just got real.

Joseph: [to the Angel] You aren’t helping.

Mary: What am I going to do? My parents will never forgive me. They are going to disown me. They’ll kick me out of the house for sure.

Inn Keeper: You can stay in my garage.

Angel: Joseph, you can fix this.

Joseph: I can?

Angel: Yes you can. You absolutely can. All you have to do is marry her.

Joseph: WHAT!?

Angel: I was going to tell you too in a dream.

Magi 1: How many dreams were you planning to be in?

Magi 2: Seriously. No more dreams.

Angel: Look, her family won’t disown her if you marry her.

Joseph: You want me to march over to her parents and tell them I’m going to marry their daughter? And that she’s pregnant?

Inn Keeper 1: Bold.

Joseph: How is THAT going to make things better. [Herod and the soldiers return]

Herod: Alright peasants. Gather around.

Soldier 1: You heard Herod. Move peasants. Assemble.

Mary: We’re all right here.

Herod: Let it be known, that I, king Herod, support Rome’s intention to count each an every person.

Soldier 1: That means you! And you too!

Joseph: Count every person? Why do we need to be counted?

Magi 2: I think he means a census.

Soldier 2: Do you dare question the king? Do you want us to take away your home, your possessions? You have no power here, peasant.

Herod: Calm down soldier, I do mean a census. You are very wise, Magi. My kingdom might need your wise guidance later.

Inn Keeper 1: OK. Well, go ahead. Count away. There are 8 of us. Count us all you want.

Soldier 1: Not here. You can’t be counted here.

Soldier 2: That’s right peasant. Don’t you know anything?

Herod: You can only be officially counted in another town. A distant town.

Inn Keeper: Why? That’s absurd.

Mary: But I can’t travel now. I can’t make that kind of journey.

Soldier 2: You will. Our king demands it.

Soldier 1: That’s right. Is there something wrong with you?

Joseph: Nothing’s wrong with her. It’s a long story.

Magi 1: Actually it’s really a short story. With not a lot of details.

Joseph: You can’t make us do this.

Herod: Oh, I can. And I just did. You don’t question the king.

Soldier 2: Better start walking, peasants. [Herod and the soldiers leave]

Inn Keeper: That’s OK. Everyone can stay in my garage until this thing is over. [Everyone leaves. The Shepherds return]

Shepherd 1: So what do you think of Herod and those soldiers?

Shepherd 2: What a bunch of jerks. They won’t listen to anyone. They just go around making everyone do what they want to do without even asking us.

Shepherd 1: Who put them in charge anyway?

Shepherd 2: Well, there’s been a series of government models. Monarchy. Republic. Empire. Now it’s a Dictatorship.

Shepherd 1: King Herod’s a Dictator?

Shepherd 2: Technically yes.

Shepherd 1: Well, he certainly is acting like one. Look!
Over there! I see a wool sweater!

Shepherd 2: Wow, that’s a big one. It looks angry. Did you bring that really long curvy stick? [Angel returns, hums a tune.]

Shepherd 1: What is that sound!

Shepherd 2: That unearthly music! It’s terrifying!

Shepherd 1: There’s nowhere to hide! [Shepherds fall down to the ground.]

Angel: Hey, where have you been? Have you just been wandering around? Why are you on the ground?

Shepherd 2: The light! I’m blinded!

Angel: Did you hear about there’s a Messiah about to be born? The baby king?

Shepherd 1: What king is this that you speak of? Herod?

Angel: No, a savior. Someone to rewrite the all the rules. Someone to free us from sin. Someone bring love and grace and true justice into the world.

Shepherd 2: And it’s a baby?

Angel: Yes, God’s son. Look there. See the star? The baby will be born there, and you will find him in a manger.

Shepherd 1: A baby king? God’s son? Let’s check it out! [Herod, Soldiers and Magi return.]

Soldier 1: Look at that star!

Soldier 2: That thing is lit!

Magi 1: Or course it’s lit. It’s a star. It’s going to burn bright like that for billions of years.

Herod: Yes, yes. I’m not going to concern myself with these messages from the cosmos. Global warming. Overuse of antibiotics. Depletion of natural resources. Enough with your science-y doom and gloom. How will those things affect me now? What about my power? Tell me about this baby king.

Soldier 1: There’s only one king for this land.

Magi 2: Well, this king is going to break all the rules. Change the order of things. Show the world a different way of living.

Herod: Like what? Other than my way?

Soldier 2: King Herod’s way is the only way.

Magi 1: The way of grace and forgiveness and caring. Of treating people kindly. Of caring for the least among us instead of putting others down. Of sharing our wealth and talent.

Magi 2: Of a world we can be proud of living in.

Herod: Sharing wealth? Helping others? No thank you. It takes all my energy taking care of me. What about looking out for yourself?

Soldier 1: This sounds too radical for me. I like things the way they are.

Soldier 2: This baby king must be stopped.

Herod: This threat to my power cannot stand. Find this baby king. I wish to meet him and pay my respects.

Magi 1: [to Magi 2] I don’t think he means to be nice to him.

Magi 2: King Herod, we will find this king for you.

Magi 1: Wait. But.

Magi 2: [crossing fingers] We will contact you when we do so you can pay your respects.

Magi 1: We will?

Magi 2: [holds up fingers for Magi 1 to see] We will.

Magi 1: Oh, right. [crosses fingers too] Sure we will. [Herod and the soldiers leave. Inn Keeper, Mary, Joseph and the shepherds return]

Inn Keeper: Everyone, there’s a star burning brightly over my garage!

Mary: Look at that thing!

Joseph: That’s not strange at all.

Magi 1: Mary. Joseph. Herod wants your baby dead.

Mary: Jesus. His name is Jesus.

Magi 2: You have to escape. You can’t let him find you.

Magi 1: The world needs this baby.

Shepherd 1: Yes, the world needs this baby! Last week we had a lock-down in our school. Police searched the halls with guns drawn.

Shepherd 2: Our country is completely divided. This election has turned friends and family against each other. We have no idea what the future holds.

Inn Keeper: My classmates have been spreading awful rumors about other people on-line. I have a friend who’s afraid to go to school.

Joseph: My parents both lost their jobs.

Angel: The world seems to be coming apart. We need someone to show us a different way.

Mary: Someone to show us how to break out of this cycle. To love and care for each other.

Magi 1: To fight for the marginalized and oppressed.

Magi 2: To represent the powerless.

Mary: Who else is going to save us from our sins if not this baby king?

Inn Keeper: Hey, the star went out.

Mary: Why are you standing so close to me.

Angel: I feel different.

Magi 1: I think they it’s over.

Magi 2: It’s really over. [Herod and the soldiers return.]

Herod: Hi everyone.

Joseph: Where have you been?

Soldier 1: I’ve had the strangest afternoon.

Soldier 2: Where did this helmet come from?

Shepherd 1: Who gave me this wool sweater?

Director: [returning] OK kids. Does everyone have their scripts? Let’s get this rehearsal started.

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