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Christmas performance
Maria & Joseph & others


  • A
  • B
  • C
  • D
  • E
  • T
  • Maria (mute)
  • Joseph (mute)

Scene 1:

A: Christmas Eve has come round again. And how are the things with you? Is there anything different or is it the same as last year?
B: Hmm, I don’t know. I assume that my parents want to go to church… the same thing as the year before.
C: Hmm, church… that’s not my scene. And anyhow, it’s always the same thing.
B: Hmm.
A: What’s up with you? You always went to church before. So you should know what it’s all about.
B: What do mean by “what it’s all about”? They always have a nativity play, or whatever they call it. And they talk strange.
D: Yes and isn’t it boring? Every year it is the same procedure. There’s Mary, Joseph and the Christ Child.
B: You are right… but last year they had a real baby instead of a doll. I think it was a girl. But that was right mess because the baby wetted herself.
A: (Laughs) you mean she wetted her pants?
B: (Worse)…just as Joseph gave the baby to Mary, she started to pee. They only had those cotton nappies and it kept dripping on the ground. Joseph wanted to give the child to Mary as fast as possible. But she didn’t want to take it. The look on her face was a picture.
C: And what happened afterwards?
B: A woman came and changed the bawling child for a doll.
D: So you see; things even go wrong in church even when it seems like everything is so orderly.
B: Yes, I thought the same… everything ran smoothly in the years before. The story was always perfect.
A: What do you mean by that?
B: I’m not sure how to explain it. (His face looks concentrated)… wait a moment… (He pauses briefly)…Yes, tell me the Christmas story in your own words…
A: Why should I do that? Ok, I’ll tell you.
C: Go on you storyteller!
D: (Ironic) be a sport!
A: (Looks at him with disbelief) Mary and Joseph slept in a stall, because there were no free beds in the hostels. The stall was also the place where the Christ Child was born. The landlord brought them some nappies and there were three wise men; Melchior, Balthazar and … (he stops) what was his name? Oh yes, it was Caspar. And the three men brought gifts for the Christ Child. I think that was gold and such stuff… oh wait there were also shepherds. They visited the stall, too. Oh yes, and all’s well that ends well. What a wonderful world.
B: Right!
A: And now?
B: Don’t know. Everything sounds so easy and carefree… the baby Jesus is born and along come the shepherds and the three wise men. And at the end they even get gold – how lucky can you get?
C: Yes, a fairytale with a happy end and everybody is happy.
B: Isn’t there a deeper meaning? Jesus really existed. And I don’t mean his stories in Bible. Scientists have proved it.
D: And our calendar depends on his date of birth. So this story must have a deeper meaning… or how do you explain the thing with the chronology? Why didn’t our calendar begin with the birth of a fairytale figure?
C: Ok, let’s assume that Jesus really existed. And let us call him the king of the world, as the Christians do. Why was he born in a stall? He is the son of God or not? Why is a king, and he seems to be more like that, born in a stall?
A: Yes, I agree with you. Perhaps Jesus was a pretty nice guy but what did he change? After Jesus was born everything got worse in the world. There were wars, atomic bombs, terrorist attacks and corruption. It seems to me that he didn’t change anything.
D: Is it important whether he existed?
(B is dreaming)
A: Hello, are you here?
B: What is if we don’t understand the story about the Jesus Child? Perhaps we don’t understand what God wants? Can you follow me?

Scene 2

It’s getting darker. B sits at his place without moving. E and T stand at this side and are talking to him in a lowered voice.
Mary and Joseph (Mary has the Christ Child in her arms) go to the manger. The manger is covered with barbed wire and thorns. A map of the world is fixed next to the manger. At the moment when Mary wants to put the baby into the manger, T begins to talk. So Mary stops and steps a step back. While E is talking, Mary tries to put the baby back, into the manger.

T: (Talks to Mary) don’t put the baby into the barbed wire! This innocent child doesn’t belong in this world. In this world is war. The people fight, shoot and kill each other. Don’t put this child into this cruel world. (Calmer to B) you see; there is no place for such a child. People are bad. They are at war because they are hungry for power. They shoot at each other because they don’t want to share anything. They kill each other because they hate each other. How can a child solve those problems?
E: (Talks to Mary) that is exactly why we need this child. It is the child of peace. If this child can’t save the world, who else? Put the child into this world; because the world needs this child. (Talks to B) the child itself represents peace. And it is able to bring peace into this cruel world; a kind of peace that wars cannot destroy.
T: (Talks to Mary) no, oh my God, don’t put the child into the barbed wire. This child doesn’t belong in this world. The world is unfair. Half of the people starve and the other half has so much that they don’t know what to do with it. Don’t do that to your child! (Talks to B) look how egoistic people are: The poor have to steal to survive and even the children have to fight for a piece of bread. The rich just think about their own profit. And the tip of the iceberg is that the rich try to set off the money from denotations against tax. It is not a good place for a child.
E: (Talks to Maria) the people are egoistic because they have forgotten what love means. But many would change their behaviour if they could understand that they gain a lot from giving and helping. The world needs this child. (Talks to B) you think: I don’t need this child. I don’t need it, because I’m fine. But don’t you have some doubts? Don’t you think: “Is that everything? - sleeping, working, parties and beer? - There must be something that’s more important.” And this child can satisfy your longing. The world needs this child.
T: (Talks to Mary) don’t put this child into the barbed wire. It doesn’t make sense. People don’t have any feelings. They are convinced that they don’t need this child. They aren’t interested. They are convinced that they will get along fine alone. Don’t put this child into this careless world. (Talks to B) you don’t need this child either. You are satisfied. You have everything you want: friends, work, parties and beer! We have no use for this child in our world.
E: (Talks to Maria) the world needs something new, something different. This world needs this child, somebody who shows the world a new direction.

(Talks to B) the indifference exists because you are used to everything and you don’t want to believe that you can discover new things in the world. If you turn to this child you will see how important it is.

(After this conversation, Mary decides once and for all to put the baby into the manger.)

(Shouts at Mary and Joseph) are you blind? The world is going torture this child. How can a mother be so heartless? (Turns to Joseph) and what’s with you? How can a father be so violent to his child? Look, your child is so innocent.

(Talks to B) is there any sense? Why would a father behave like this? This man isn’t quite right in the head. Come on, say: “We don’t want the child of a man who is not quite right in the head! “
(B opens his mouth, but is not able to say a word)
E: (Talks to Maria) yes, your child is going to die, because most people will hate your child. But that’s not all! Your child is going to conquer death. He is the hope for everybody who understands the importance of this child.
(Mary puts the child into the manger)
(Talks to B) can’t you understand? Your father loves you so much that he is willing to put his own child into this cruel world. And he does it just for the one reason; he wants you to recognise the gift he is giving to you. (E turns around and looks at the child). Here is the child. It doesn’t matter if you are for or against the child, because he is there. It is your decision: You can stick to your opinion or change it and say: “Yes, I need this child” Think about it!

Author: Thomas Baberowski

[ © | 2000 Games and Ideas for Youth Work ] - 2000 Games and Ideas for Youth Work
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