With Heero's arrival on Nov. 4 came numerous implications for our family holidays. Among other things, it meant that his mama might be able to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner minus the heartburn. It meant our Christmas Day gathering would, once again, be larger this year than at the one before, and there would be another name added to our Christmas shopping list.
As it turns out, the timing of the Nov. 4 birth date also gave Heero a chance to star in a Broadway show. (I say this because in our town, the place where Heero made his acting debut is actually located on a street named Broadway--I kid you not!) This year, Heero was the perfect size to play the role of Baby Jesus in a local church pageant.
This particular church, where Heero's parents are members, regularly performs a walk-through pageant called "Journey to Bethlehem." Here, audience members assume the role of travelers moving past a series of live scenes reminiscent of the time and place that was the Bethlehem of Christ's birth.
Such scenes include a dramatic pronouncement by the prophet Isaiah, an inside look at King Herod's court, and an outdoor venue featuring shepherds and real sheep. Late into the journey, the traveler enters a marketplace featuring beggar children (who exact real coins from passers-by) as well as artisans and craftsmen demonstrating basket-weaving, pottery-making, bread-baking, and other period-appropriate trades. "The Journey to Bethlehem" ends, predictably, with a final scene at the stable of an inn, where Mary, Joseph, and Baby Jesus are found.
When Pa-pa and I got to the end of the Journey, I lagged behind the group to sneak an anachronistic photo of Baby Jesus and his mother. Admittedly, the pic is a little off-center due to its being snapped hurriedly in an effort not to destroy the ambience of the scene for others. However, I didn't let myself feel too guilty: after all, if Baby Jesus' grandmother fails to preserve such a scrapbook-worthy moment as this, then who will?
Here, then, is our little Heero, pacifier and all, in his first role as a star on Broadway:
I am thinking he looks and acts the part quite well. Granted, he may not measure up to the divine perfection of the historical Jesus, but he is close enough to perfect for us.