Light: A Christmas Eve Reader’s Theatre

We are people of the light…

we say, “Let there be light!” And behold!

Lamplight, headlight, spotlight,

flashlight, floodlight, footlight,

searchlight, stoplight, streetlight,

windows cascading light,

skyscraper towers of light,

satellites that compete with starlight,

screens of all kinds lit with light,

light sabres, lighthouses and light bulbs;

halogen, incandescent, fluorescent!

We dodge deep darkness with twinkly lights.

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Tender Mercy Call to Worship

We are people here like Peter sinking.

We step out in faith because we want to follow you,

but we fall short in so many ways.

We are afraid of what other people think of us.

We are not sure we have the ability to do what you ask us.

We think the job is too big for us.


We are people here like Thomas doubting.

We are not sure what it means to be a Christian.

We are not sure what good it does to come to church.

We are not sure what you can do in this world that is so wounded.

We won’t take one step until we see the whole way ahead.

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The Sweet Good-bye

At the last, let it be a sweet good-bye.

All business finished.

All affairs tidied.

All loose ends attended.

All regrets squared away.

All loved ones gathered.

All words of love spoken.

All life lived fully.

One last look,

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A God who Grieves

When I am beside myself with grief–

Jesus, you are there beside me.

When my mind reels and I feel like I’m falling—

Jesus, you are the fixed point that does not move.

When grief’s bands tighten around my chest—

Jesus, you are the oxygen I breathe.

When the ache in my heart is the only thing I feel—

Jesus, save me.

You who wept with sorrow and with fear,

thank you for staying with me in this hour,

this hour of grief.

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Burning Heart Benediction

My friends, look for Jesus!

Seek him as a treasure in this great wide world.

Seek him in the eyes of your loved ones

and in the eyes of strangers.

May your heart burn within you

as the Lord draws close to you this week.

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The Best Christmas Gift

Christ comes as a gift into your life,

but he doesn’t come

wrapped in shiny paper and ribbons

and you can’t say

“Isn’t that nice,”

as you quickly slide him under the bed

or store him in a dark closet

thinking that someday you’ll find a place to put him.

Christ is a gift that you can’t

pack away neatly in a box,

bringing him out for special holidays

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Journey with Jesus

Thank you God for your good and faithful servants

    our forefathers and foremothers in faith

    who nurtured us and encouraged us

    to journey in Jesus’ footsteps.

We follow their examples and find

    that your steadfast love sustains us

    in dark valleys of disbelief

    on mountains of joyful clarity

    along each daily dusty road we walk.

You listen patiently to our complaints:

    “Our feet hurt!”

    “We’re tired!”

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About Carol Penner

I am a Mennonite pastor currently teaching theology at Conrad Grebel University College in Waterloo, Ontario. I’ve served congregations in Ontario and most recently, Alberta.

I love to write and to lead worship! If you are finding my writing helpful, I would love to hear from you! Feel free to use or adapt the material here, it is all written by me. If printing material, please credit “Copyright Carol Penner” (and say whether you modified it). If publishing, please contact me for permission. Contact me at

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