This skit was presented by three puppets during the Christmas Eve service at Faith Lutheran Church on December 24, 2018, as the children gathered around the manger scene:
[the sound of Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells is heard …. ]
MACY: [singing] “Jingle all the way, oh what fun it is to ride on a one-horse open sleigh …” I love this time of year! Meeeeerrrrrrrrryyyy Christmas everyone!
JILL: [looking sad]
MACY: Hi Jill, how are you? You look sad. Is everything ok?
JILL: Oh well, you know …
MACY: Come on, Jill, put a smile on your face! Christmas is great! The lights, the songs, the snow, the presents, the ginger bread dough …
JILL: [sigh] I just find this time of year kinda hard to take, is all.
MACY: The message of Christmas is joy! We went with friends to church, remember?
JILL: I know the message of Christmas: [speaks quickly, like rattling off a list] God so loved the world, and sent Jesus to us, born a baby in Bethlehem. Mary & Joseph and no room in the inn. The stable and manger. The shepherds in the fields. The angels chorus. The magi from the East …
MACY: And that doesn’t help? God is with us. God is with you! I can’t wait for Christmas dinner!
JILL: Yeah. But last Christmas my grandma died. She always made the turkey. And my family always fights when we get together at Christmas. And they complain about everything: the traffic, the busy malls, not having enough money, the hypocrites at church, the flu, Donald Trump, etc. etc.
MACY: Let’s not get political here!
JILL: Not only does Christmas make me feel I miss my grandma, everyone around me gets really grumpy at this time of year. Stress, or something. [shakes head] I don’t know how the Christmas message has anything to do with all of that.
MACY: [trying to cheer up Jill with some distraction] I went Christmas shopping yesterday, and look at this! [displays ugly Christmas sweater]
JILL: Very nice [sulking]
MACY: I even found another sweater I like that I’ll wear on Christmas day: On the front is a picture of Jesus’s face and the caption reads: “Let’s party like it’s my birthday.”
JILL: [shakes head as ISMAEL comes onto the scene]
MACY [with enthusiasm] & JILL [softly]: Hi Ismael.
ISMAEL: Hi Macy! Hi Jill! I heard your great singing! Getting ready for Christmas?
MACY: Yes [looks at Jill questioningly]. At least, I am!
JILL: What are you doing for the holidays, Ismael?
ISMAEL: We don’t celebrate Christmas, but my family gets together and we make a whole bunch of baklava to take to take to my uncle’s restaurant in the Market.
JILL: I love sweets!
MACY: What’s ba-kla-va? [tries to pronounce]
ISMAEL: In my religion we eat it during the holy days. It’s a layered pastry soaked in honey and served with walnuts.
JILL: Yum! [rubbing her tummy]
ISMAEL: My uncle opens his restaurant on December 25thfor anyone who doesn’t have a home, to come and have a meal. Baklava is very popular!
JILL: My grandma always had a baking day before Christmas. I went over to her house every year to make cookies for the Christmas meal.
ISMAEL: Hey, we’re making the baklava tomorrow. You’re welcome to come over and help us.
JILL: I’d love to learn how to bake it! [her head is held high, obviously happy now]. I can bring some to my family dinner.
MACY: Can I come, too?
ISMAEL: Sure! The more, the merrier!
MACY: How do you like the snow, Ismael?
ISMAEL: Love it!
MACY: Can I teach you a song? It goes like this ….
MACY, JILL & ISMAEL interlock arms and skip off stage singing together the first lines of “Jingle bells, Jingle bells” fading to the rousing applause of the congregation!