On the Way to the Chancel
These little dramas are intended for use in the worship service either prior to or following the reading of the Sunday Gospel. Either way, through parable, fantasy or direct reference, they are a way to capture the obvious and the subtle themes in the Gospels for Advent through Epiphany.
The dramas require little rehearsal and few actors. Set furnishings and props are minimal. They are written to be presented primarily by young people for the worshiping congregation.
The "Focus" section introducing the dramas might be proclaimed before the drama is presented or simply printed in the worship folder.
If they enhance a celebration of the comedy of God that culminates in the birth of a baby boy in Bethlehem destined to save His people from their sins, they will have done what they were meant to do.
The Gospel for Advent 2 (Series B)
Based on Mark 1:1-8
The drama is a parable on readiness for a visit from Jesus Christ. Such a visit calls for an honest confrontation with who we are, why Christ is coming, the inside-out cleaning of repentance.
The living room of Craig and Karen Brent, a young couple chosen to host over-night the President of the United States. Their two small children are asleep. Easy chairs and an end-table are adequate for set furnishings.
Craig - eager, loyal, proud
Karen - harried, doubtful, cynical
John - a "front man" for Presidential visits; breaks the mold by wearing blue jeans and a work shirt; probing, honest.
Karen: (enters as Craig reads the paper; looks exhausted, plops down in an easy chair) Sure hope you're enjoying your paper, Craig.
Craig: Kids asleep?
Karen: Finally. They're not even sure who the President is, but they're so excited about his visit they could hardly fall asleep.
Craig: I've looked at our family picture here in the paper I don't know how many times, but I can't get over it. The President of the United States sleeping here, eating your cherry cobbler, and reading stories to our kids. Tomorrow's the day, Karen.
Karen: You don't have to tell me tomorrow's the day.
Craig: What's left to do?
Karen: There is the matter of the cherry cobbler and the new drapes that never arrived, not to mention how were going to keep Grandma Brent from parading an elephant through the living room.
Craig: Calm down. It would help a bit if you and the President were from the same party. Are you going to tell him that you're a registered Republican, Karen?
Karen: He probably already knows. What don't Presidents know? Shouldn't John be here by now? He's always right on time. About John, by the way. What do you make of that guy?
Craig: What do you mean?
Karen: The jeans and the work shirt. He sure doesnt look like a front man for the President. Where's the vested suit? And what's the guy's last name?
Craig: You don't know?
Karen: Do you? (knock on door or doorbell ring) That's gotta be John. On time again. (lets John in)
John: Karen. (shakes her hand) And Craig. (shakes his hand) Good to see you both again. This is probably our last time together. You might say the Kingdom is at hand.
Craig: Have a seat, John.
John: I can only stay a minute. (sits down) I did want to stop by and make one last check on your preparations. Are you ready?
Craig: Well, look around you, John. Have you ever seen a cleaner house? Karen has worked herself to the point of exhaustion!
Karen: And Craig has read the paper to the point of nausea...mine! I'm surprised he hasn't already put the sign up on the head-board: "The President slept here."
Craig: Have you checked lately, Karen?
Karen: You're kidding. Anyway, John, except for the drapes and the cherry cobbler, I'd say the house was ready.
John: But are you ready?
Craig: What do you mean?
John: If someone hasn't told you, I'll tell you now. The President is more interested in you than he is in what you own or how spruced up your house is.
Karen: I don't believe it! Two months of frantic work and planning! Two months of clean, clean, clean! And now he says the President just wants to see me! Now what do we do?
Craig: What do you mean, honey?
Karen: Now everything is ready except me! (all exit)
Originally published in Resources for Youth Ministry 1978:4.
Republished and revised in September 2011 for thESource.