Carol – THIS CHILD
1 This Child, secretly comes in the night,
oh, this Child, hiding a heavenly light,
oh, this Child, coming to us like a stranger,
this heavenly Child.
This Child, heaven come down now to be with us here,
heavenly love and mercy appear,
softly in awe and wonder come near
to this heavenly Child.
2 This Child, rising on us like the sun,
oh this Child, given to light everyone,
oh this Child, guiding our feet on the pathway
to peace on earth.
3 This Child, raising the humble and poor,
oh this Child, making the proud ones to fall;
this Child, filling the hungry with good things,
this heavenly Child.
Graham Kendrick (born 1950)
READING – MATTHEW 3:1-13
Christmas with Rodger Raven (Puppet Script)
PUPPET SCRIPT: “CHRISTMAS DAY Friday 25th December 2020
Hugh: I wonder where Rodger is…..I expect he is wrapping up his presents for his mum and dad. Aaahhh…..here he comes….….I can hear him singing.
Enter Rodger singing to the tune of “Jingle bells”
Rodger: Jingle bells, batman smells, robin laid an egg……Oh hello Hugh…..when did you come round?
Hugh: Hello Rodger….I just popped in to see how you all are doing and to see if I could lend a hand with anything.
Rodger: It’s lovely to see you Hugh. Oh I am sooooooooooh excited…I can’t believe that it is Christmas Day. Have you looked under the Christmas tree, Hugh? There are loads and loads of presents and most of them are for me.
Hugh: Yes I had noticed…..so many people are kind to you Rodger. Have you wrapped up your presents yet for your mum and dad?
Rodger: No I haven’t quite got round to it yet. Guess what I’ve bought for Dad?
Hugh: I haven’t a clue Rodger. What have you bought him?
Rodger: A massive bar of Toblerone….well I should say….most of a bar of Toblerone.
Hugh: What do you mean….most of a bar of Toblerone?
Rodger: Well I got rather hungry in the middle of the night after Raven-cubs last week so I had a little nibble….and then another little nibble and then rather a lot of other nibbles……….but, Hugh, there are still a few pieces left.
Hugh: Oh Rodger….I wish you’d told me earlier and we could have gone down to the shops together and bought your dad another one. So what have you bought your mum? Please don’t tell me….. most of a bar of crunchie?
Rodger: I have bought her rather a nice fridge magnet as a matter of a fact. It says…. “Stop and count to ten before you lose your temper”. Do you think she’ll like it?
Hugh: Mmmm…..not what you might call a very diplomatic present.
Rodger: What’s diplomatic Hugh?
Hugh: Never mind Rodger……how about you tell me what you have been doing over these last few weeks as I have hardly seen you?
Rodger: Last weekend dad and I went and got the Christmas tree from the garden centre and then it took dad absolutely ages to put up the lights.
Hugh: I hope you kept well out of the way Rodger.
Rodger: Dad started to say words that I didn’t understand, and when I asked him what they meant mum told me to go and buy some milk for her. I don’t know why because we already had six pints of milk in the fridge.
Hugh: Well the tree certainly looks beautiful to me. You made a very good job of decorating it…..although I have to say that there are some fairly unusual decorations on it.
Rodger: Thanks Hugh. Did you like my dinosaurs with party hats on?
Hugh: Mmmm…..so tell me….what else have you been doing Rodger?
Rodger: Lots and lots of shopping with mum…..it’s really booooooooring. I hate shopping but there seems to be endless stuff to buy. Presents for Auntie this, presents for Uncle that and then all of the food. You’d think that mum was feeding an army the way the trolley is piled up high.
Hugh: I’m sure that you will enjoy all of the lovely food that your mum cooks for you today. I’m looking forward to our lunch together.
Rodger: So am I Hugh especially the turkey and the stuffing. I hope mum doesn’t make me eat a Brussels sprout again, just because it is “good for me.”
Hugh: If she does we don’t want the dying cow impression like last year Rodger OK?
Rodger: OK Hugh. I shall just have to squish it under my foot.
Hugh: I’ll pretend I didn’t hear that Rodger…..
Rodger: Thanks Hugh…..oh I forgot to tell you that as well as decorating the Christmas tree and all of that shopping, I have also been to three Zoom parties, a trip to Father Christmas in the garden centre, an online play at my cousin’s school, and ….I’m worn out.
Hugh: I’m not surprised Rodger. I’m exhausted just listening to you.
Rodger: Mum said the other day that she wished we could cancel Christmas Hugh…..but I love it….all of the food, the presents, the entertainments….in fact I can’t wait to see all of the films on the TV this afternoon…..
Hugh: I know Rodger…it is all so much fun…but imagine for a moment that all of the things you have just told me were taken away, as your dear mother is longing for right now. Imagine the Covid Virus stopped all of that.
Rodger: Like the presents and the Christmas tree?
Rodger: And the food and the Zoom parties?
Rodger: And Father Christmas and plays and Christmas TV?
Rodger: There wouldn’t be anything left, Hugh…..that doesn’t sound much fun to me.
Hugh: Think again Rodger…..the most precious thing of all would be left…..
Rodger: I know…carol singing. I did get really cold
Hugh: Rodger…..think again…….who were you singing about?
Rodger: aaaah……I know…..we were singing about Jesus being born….
Hugh: Well done Rodger…….you see Christmas is actually all about Father God sending his son Jesus to earth so that we can receive His precious gifts of love, peace, hope, joy and life. Now that is something truly worth celebrating isn’t it?
Rodger: It is Hugh. Oh thank you for coming round and talking with me otherwise I might have forgotten about Jesus……oh no….I have just realised something..
Hugh: What’s that Rodger?
Rodger: In all of my busyness doing other things, I have forgotten to buy Jesus a present! I have nothing to give him. Perhaps I could give him my sprouts? He did make them after all!
Hugh: Oh Rodger!
Praise Band – The Drumnadrochit Carol: Audio track here:
Jesus Christ, although He is God
Did not grasp divinity
Enters our humanity.
Comes a nothing, as a servant
Comes in all humility
Dies our death obediently
So God raises Him above all
Over all, for all to see
Lifted high by all is He.
Video – Bible Society – It begins in Bethlehem
Carol – Joy to the world
1 Joy to the world, the Lord has come!
Let earth receive her King;
let every heart prepare him room,
and heaven and nature sing.
2 Joy to the earth, the Saviour reigns!
Your sweetest songs employ;
while fields and streams and hills and plains
repeat the sounding joy.
3 He rules the world with truth and grace,
and makes the nations prove
the glories of his righteousness,
the wonders of his love. Isaac Watts (1674–1748)