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The Christmas Committee
by Dale Davis
12/03/06
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Characters
BRIAN: Calm personality, teacher and leader by nature. (mid 40s). Men・s ministry leader
Brother HANK: Elderly, calm, wise. Very slow in thought and speech. (80s)
CHAD: Impatient, young guy. Youth Leader (20s).
SUSAN: Overly confident, arrogant, overbearing. (mid 40s) In charge of women・s ministry.
KAREN: Overly sensitive, lacks self-confidence, people pleaser. (mid 30s). In charge of children・s ministry

Scene/Plot
Church leadership meeting held in a classroom/conference room of the church. They are meeting to discuss and plan this year・s Christmas program.

Message
Importance of relying on God to work through us.

Props
One round table, five chairs, one bible, notebooks, pens, large bag/purse or Karen. Walker/cane for Hank.


LIGHTS UP

One round table and five chairs sit in center of the stage. Brother Hank enters STAGE RIGHT carrying only a worn Bible. He walks very slowly (showing his age) to the table. At the halfway point, Brian and Chad enter from STAGE RIGHT and pass him up on the way to the table.

BRIAN: (As he Passes by) How ya doing, Brother Hank?

HANK: (Stops in his tracks to answer very slowly) W-e-l-l, I・m finer than a frog・s hair. Yes sirree, I・m finer than a frog・s hair. The Lord is good! (Continues walking)

CHAD: Dude, did you have to ask him? He・s like, always givin・ that corny line about a frog・s hair. Ya know what I・m sayin・?
BRIAN: Chad, do you have any idea just how fine a frog・s hair is?

CHAD: No clue, dude. I usually don・t hang out at hair salons for frogs.

BRIAN: Well, the hair on a frog is so fine that you can・t even see it. That・s just how fine it is.

Susan enters STAGE RIGHT, walking wistfully.

SUSAN: (Loudly and directly to him as if he・s deaf) How are you today, Brother Hank?

CHAD: Man, here we go again.

HANK: (Slowly) W-e-l-l, I・m finer than a frog・s hair. Yes sirree, I・m finer than a frog・s hair. The Lord is good!

CHAD: Someone needs to check his meds. Ya know what I・m sayin・?

SUSAN: Good afternoon, gentleman. (Cheerful) Wasn・t today・s sermon excellent? I met with the pastor on Tuesday morning and almost everything I told him regarding what・s wrong with men today was mentioned in his sermon. Obviously, the pastor appreciates my input. I really think my husband learned a few things too.

CHAD: (Sarcastically) DidKyou....happen to catch the part about wives submitting to their husbands?

SUSAN: Oh, I don・t think that was for me. My husband and I have an understanding. I say what goes - and he understands.

BRIAN: Well, as you know, we・re all in the process of becoming more like Jesus.

Karen ENTERS STAGE RIGHT carrying more books and papers than she can manage and takes a seat at the table.

KAREN: (Out of Breath) Sorry I・m late, everyone. (Huffing and puffing) Children・s church ran a few minutes over. Then I had to help Joan with the Kitchen clean up, and Ruby needed some help getting all her kids into the minivan V you know Mark is still out of town on business. And while I was outside I noticed the Johnson・s SUV had a flat, so I changed the tire for them and since I was I already filthy, I just went ahead and changed their oil, too. I had just enough time to run home, take a shower, change my clothes and get dinner on the table for the kids.

BRIAN: You did all that in the twenty minutes since church let out?

KAREN: Oh, I wish! (Looking at watch) It took meK twenty-two minutes and 37 seconds.
CHAD: (Impatient) Can we like, get started with the meeting?

KAREN: (Softly and sweetly) Oh, brother Hank. I didn・t know you were going to join us today. How are you feeling?

CHAD: (Very sarcastic) YES! One more time, please!

HANK: (Slowly) W-e-l-l, I・m finer than a frog・s hair. Yes sirree, I・m finer than a frog・s hair. The Lord is good!

CHAD: (To Brian) He is freakin・ me out, dude!

BRIAN: Let・s get started with the meeting.

CHAD: Already?

BRIAN: The pastor asked us to get together and plan this year・s Christmas Celebration Service. As the leader of men・s ministries, I・d like to offer our assistance with any set building needed for the program. Does anyone have any ideas for a program yet?

SUSAN: In our ladies・ meeting last week, we came up with some great ideas. But, the one we liked most V my idea V is a Church production of :Miracle on 34th Street;. It・s a classic! And in the end, it・s a miracle that the little girl gets a house and finally believes in Santa. The more I think about it, if we presented it just right, the Santa character could represent Jesus. (Questioning her thought) Some how.

BRIAN: (Slowly with compassion) Ummm. I don・t know. I like the idea of a Christmas play but I・m not sure that・s the right one to use in our church. Any other ideas?

CHAD: I was thinkin・ we could rock this place out! Ya know what I・m sayin・? Some of the teens can like, really jam! We want to put together a rock-n-roll worship band and play some old Christmas tunes. You know what I・m sayin・? Maybe a little Springsteen. Yeah, man, the Boss・ version of :Santa Claus is Coming to Town;, then we can slow it down with Elvis・ :Blue Christmas;. You know what would bring the house down? A duet of Little Drummer Boy. Like Bowie and Crosby did in the 80s. That would be tight! Ya know what I・m sayin・?

BRIAN: (Slowly with compassion) Y-e-a-h. I like the idea of music but I・m not sure if your choice of songsKor...the artist・s styles would be appropriate. Karen?

KAREN: Well, I don・t see why I couldn・t just do another Children・s program and handle it all myself this year. That・s pretty much what I・ve done for the past eight years. Really, I don・t mind doing it all. I can start writing out a script this afternoon. Then I・ll just need to go shopping for props, build the set, make forty-some costumes, hire a choreographer, and learn to play the piano by next week. I think I can get it all done.

BRIAN: (Slowly with compassion) Y-e-a-h, well, that・s very generous of you. But, I think the pastor would really like for all of us to do our part in the program this year.

SUSAN: (Loudly to Hank) What do you think, Brother Hank?

CHAD: He・s not deaf!

HANK: What?

KAREN: Susan was asking for your opinion on our ideas.

CHAD: You knowK(Waves hand in front of Hank)Kfor the Christmas Celebration Service.

HANK: W-e-l-l K I don・t know. I・m gonna think about it.

SUSAN: (With impatience) Fine. While you think about it we・ll continue discussing ideas.

(The following lines are all spoken simultaneously and get louder as the discussion turns to doubt)

SUSAN: Ok, so maybe we don・t need a Santa Claus. But it really needs to be a show that takes place in New York City. Shopping in Manhattan is a tradition in my family and it really does represent Christmas in America. The last time I was there I spent six hours in Bloomingdale・s and the entire next day at Saks. Speaking of shopping I don・t know if I・ll be able to help with the Christmas program with all the Christmas shopping I always have to do. I don・t know!

CHAD: I don・t see why we can・t just give the stage to the teens for one hour in December. Can・t we trust them to come together to sing and play? Sure, maybe we need to choose a couple of other Christmas songs. Maybe even some of the old Christmas Carols. We could have Matt on bass, Eric on Drums, Kristen can handle lead vocals, and I could be on lead guitar. But, that still leaves several other teens with nothing to do for the Christmas special. Ya know what I・m sayin・?

KAREN: I・m thinking another children・s Christmas musical. Every parent and grandparent loves to see their little ones get up on stage and stare into space. It・s so cute when they forget their lines, or don・t know what to do and you can tell they・re not even sure why they・re there. But, that・s what Christmas is all about. It wouldn・t really be Christmas without a Children・s program. But, do I really want to deal with it again this year? I・m already getting stressed-out!

BRIAN: I was thinking we could build a set that represents Bethlehem and the first Christmas. We can borrow a camel and a donkey from my father-in-law・s farm. I don・t think he・d mind. He・s got more animals over there than the San Diego Zoo. My youngest son, Josh, would make a perfect baby Jesus. But, I don・t know if I・m going to have the time to get all this done. There・s only so much time in the day, in the week or until Christmas. I can・t see how it・s going to get done.

BRIAN: (Loudly, not realizing everyone else has stopped talking) KAnd on my way to work Friday morning I got a speeding ticket on I-10!

(All pause in silence)

BRIAN: (Confessing and almost in tears) And I have huge bumper sticker on the back of my car that reads :Slow down today - take time to pray;.

(All pause and look at each other not knowing what to say)

CHAD: (Trying to be consoling) IKahKjust got another tattoo last month.

SUSAN: (As if a cry for help) I sit around all day eating bon-bons and watching soap operas.

KAREN: I lied to the pastor!

ALL (not Hank): Gasp!

KAREN: At the church picnic, he said my three-bean salad was the best thing on this side of heaven. I thanked him, of course. (Almost wailing, slowly) But, I didn・t bring a three-bean salad! I brought the chicken casserole. He never said anything about my chicken casserole!

SUSAN: (With hesitation) IKI have another confession. (Slowly with drama) This will probably come as a big surprise butK.(with drama) I・m not really the perfect wife and mother that everyone thinks I am. After being in charge of the ladies・ ministry for five yearsKwellKthere・ just certain expectations. And I try my best to portray that perfect image. I・m not sure I・m the right person to lead the women・s ministry.

BRIAN: I can relate to Susan. I go out of my way to never be a stumbling block to others. I try so hard to set a perfect example in everything I do. But, I just keep messing up. Like getting a speeding ticket! (Pounding his forehead) Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! I just feel so inadequate! And now my head hurts.

CHAD: Hey, I・m not really all that! (Takes deep breath) I・ve been like, really blowing off the Lord lately. I just can・t seem to hang with Him. Ya know what I・m sayin・? I・m strugglin・, man. I・m not readin・ his word like I used to. My prayers usually take place in the JeepKbeggin・ God to clear the traffic so I・m not late for work (pause) again. And hanging with the youth was supposed to be fun. But, man, it・s a lot of work. We・ve got some serious high maintenance kids in this church. I don・t remember being like that when I was their age.

SUSAN: (Clearing her throat) You were their age two years ago!

KAREN: I have trouble saying :no;.

SUSAN: Really? I just thought you we・re Super Woman.

KAREN: It・s true. In fact, even right now I have this urge to jump in and volunteer to help you with your ministries. The youth, the women. Even the men. It・s gotten to the point that I・mKwellKI K I think I・m neglecting my own family. I just can・t keep going at this pace!

HANK: O-k-a-y, I・m ready.

ALL: (In unison, with irritation) For what?

HANK: To tell you what I think.

BRIAN: (Caught off guard) UmKyes, of course. PleaseKgo ahead, Hank.

HANK: Brian, I don・t know how anyone can get a speeding ticket on I-10. I can walk faster than the traffic on I-10. You worry too much. Always have.

Susan, I・m about to bust your bubble. Not everyone thinks you・re a perfect wife and mother. Bon-bons, huh? I would have guessed ding-dongs. And soap operas? Hey, I never miss an episode of Ugly Betty. Now, that・s a good show!

Karen, I think the pastor lied to you too. You see, I had the three-bean salad and the only thing I saw on this side of heaven was the toilet in the men・s room.

And, Chad, you・re not the only hip guy in the room. (Mockingly) You know what I・m sayin・? I also have a tattoo. It・s on my left cheek. (All lean in to look at his cheek) My other left cheek!

ALL: Oh! (Realizing his butt cheek, they gross out) Oh, oh!

HANK: Don・t ask.

CHAD: Are you just here to rip on us, Brother Hank?

HANK: N-o-o. No, I・m not! You see, what you・ve discovered here today is that you・re too weak and incapable of ministering to God・s people. As the Catholics say, BINGO! The men, women, teens - even the children - will respond to what you have to say so long as you are open and honest with them. Share your own struggles and shortcomings as you continue to grow. Don・t paint a pretty picture. Make it real! After all, it・s in your weakness that God・s power is revealed. It・s not by strength. But, by His Spirit that His work is accomplished and the Kingdom prevails. I want to encourage you. I believe God has great plans in store for this year・s Christmas Celebration. (Positively) I・m looking forward to seeing what He・s going to do.

BRIAN: WowK.IK.ahKI don・t know what else to say except thanks, Brother Hank. Is there anything else you・d like to tell us?

HANK: Yes. (Looking around the room) I just realized I・m in the wrong room! I・m supposed to be at the senior・s luncheon. Well, I think my job is done here. Is everyone, ok?

ALL: Finer than a frog・s hair.

CHAD: Ya know what I・m sayin・?

HANK: Yes, I do.

LIGHTS OUT

END

Copyright 2004 Dale L. Davis


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