by Larry Austin
Children at St. Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church will learn about the real meaning of Christmas this weekend through the medium of musical theater.
Parish youth will present the annual Christmas pageant Sunday in "The Mighty Messengers' Big Adventure, " a musical that "tells the whole journey of everyone who comes to greet the Lord when he's born," according to Jeanne Percival, who directs the pageant with Beth Boron.
Percival said the Mighty Messengers are "the littlest angels" sent by Gabriel to herald the good news of the birth of Jesus to the shepherds. Boron added the show will feature a variety of music that mixes traditional carols and Christmas songs with more modern songs about the birth of Jesus. The cast includes two dozen performers, all members of the parish, from kindergarten to 11th graders, who have been rehearsing for two months.
Boron said St. Martin's does a yearly pageant because, "There's nothing better at Christmastime than children singing and dancing and rejoicing in the birth of Jesus. We're planting seeds in their little heads that this is the real meaning of Christmas."
At the same time, parishioners and members of the community will truly be touched by the story, presented in a fun, creative way that keeps the meaning of the season at the forefront of the children's thoughts, Percival said.
"It's important for us because the youth of our parish are just the light of our parish," Percival said. "They can tell the story in a way that just touches everybody that comes to see it. To hear the story of our Lord's birth through the mouths of our youth is just a wonderful gift."
Community members are encouraged to come to either show, at Sunday's Mass or at 7 p.m.
"The Mighty Messengers' Big Adventure"
The production, the annual St. Martin's Christmas Pageant, is a presentation of the youth at St. Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church, and is directed by Jeanne Percival and Beth Boron. The pageant was created by Barny and Carter Robertson.
The pageant will be held at St. Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church, 2587 Baseline Road on Sunday, Dec. 23, during the 10 a.m. church service and again at 7 p.m. The general public is welcome.
Gabriel Alex Dodge
Mikey Austin Childs
Daniel Patrick Harper
Mary Marie Tomasula
Joseph Alex Dodge
King Herod Quinton Becker
Blastus Tommy Fabiano
Charlotte Marah Killian
Clara Leah Killian
Donkey Karli Macrides
Cranky Kelsey Percival
Libby Koyn, Sarah Dodge, Courtney Wendling
Hayley Becker, Sarah Valvo, Andrew Tomasula
Zach Winker, Mikey Percival, Alessandra Smith
The Mighty Messengers
Zach Winker, Riley Masterman, Andrew Tomasula, Sammy Fabiano, Brandon Farquharson, Meredith Ehlenfield, Karli Macrides, Nico Macrides, Trenton Childs, Mikey Percival, Alessandra Smith and Juliana Smith