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 Post subject: Christmas pageant DURING mass?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 5:07 pm 
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Tazer Queen
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I'm on a music director's list, and someone asked this question:

Quote:
Our pastor has asked me to organise a little
Christmas pagent-type thing to be performed during the children's mass
on Christmas eve. He told me that one time in the past, they did
something (at another church he was at) where he read the Christmas
story, and the children acted it out. I would also like to include some
music - sung by the children, but also perhaps by the choir. We don't
have too much time (I would think 15 minutes tops) and also not too much rehearsal time, so I need something short and simple.

I am hoping that someone here will have ideas as to what we could do.


I do not believe this is a kosher thing to do during the mass, unless the children mime the Christmas story being read by the priest during the Gospel. Nor can they interrupt with song. It disrupts the mass.

What is the rule here?
--Ann

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 5:08 pm 
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Sons of Thunder
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why oh why can they not just have a separate children's play outside of Mass?

is it THAT damn difficult to do?


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 5:16 pm 
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Tazer Queen
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tAnGo wrote:
why oh why can they not just have a separate children's play outside of Mass?

is it THAT damn difficult to do?


Sigh. I know. I agree.
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 6:10 pm 
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Handmaids of the Lord
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Oh, I saw this during a Mass last year. It was, well, disturbing (esp as I had my oldest two with me, and at the end, SANTA came in with a birthday cake for "baby Jesus").

Not this year. I'll make the trek north to our "new" parish....

Rachel

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 Post subject: Re: Christmas pageant DURING mass?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 6:34 pm 
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Sons of Thunder
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Quote:
Our pastor has asked me to organise a little
Christmas pagent-type thing to be performed during the children's mass
on Christmas eve. He told me that one time in the past, they did
something (at another church he was at) where he read the Christmas
story, and the children acted it out. I would also like to include some
music - sung by the children, but also perhaps by the choir. We don't
have too much time (I would think 15 minutes tops) and also not too much rehearsal time, so I need something short and simple.
I am hoping that someone here will have ideas as to what we could do.


:shock:

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 6:39 pm 
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Sons of Thunder
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If that person has a good relationship with the Pastor he should (like I do with my pastor) I would tell him he's crazy and NO im NOT doing anything like that. . . (I have great respect for priests, but I see nothing wrong with being honest and open)

Of course not many people feel comfortable enough to be so straightfoward with their pastor.

What to do when the Pastor ask you to something you know is not kosher????

Thats a tough one.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 11:05 pm 
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Best to do a Christmas pageant outside of Mass.

1. a fifteen minute mime/reenactment/tableaux thing while the priest or deacon reads the Gospel could easily turn into a 20 or 25 minute affair - missed cues, kids taking too long to get in place, costume problems.

2. People involved, including parents who are helping backstage will probably miss some or all of the Mass. And they will probably be too exhausted to properly attend another Christmas Mass at another time.

3. Where will the parents of Joseph and Mary sit? Do they get special seating? What about the parents of the kid wearing the donkey costume? What about the moms who bend overbackwards to pull this thing off who end up sitting in the back of the church while another family manages to take up an entire front row so that they can see 'the show?' You may have to sell tickets in order to make sure that everyone gets a seat. Where will the C&E's sit? People can be oversensitive about the whole seating issue at Christmas even without a pageant.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 11:25 pm 
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Location: looking for the choir loft...
4. A Christmas pageant done outside of Mass can be done bigger and better. You could have a reader for the narrative parts (or Santa telling the story) and single lines of dialogue can be recited by individual kids. More attention to costumes/props/backdrops = more people getting involved = better for the life of the parish.

5. A real pageant will make better use of space. Cramming kids onto the sanctuary during Mass is not a good idea, especially if the Creche is also up on the altar.

6. A pageant outside of Mass can also incorporate other parts of the story, such as the Annunciation or the visit from the Magi = more costumes, more kids getting involved, etc.

7. Most importantly IMO: what is happening during the Gospel? Christ is present to us in a unique way. God speaks to us differently through the Gospels than through the other readings, that is why we give the Gospel reading pride of place. It would be better to use incense during the Gospel reading and have the priest or deacon take half a minute to explain to the young people why we incense the Gospel.

A pageant during Mass will merely entertain. It may tug at the heart-strings, and no doubt some people will equate the emotion with inspiration - which may or may not be true, depending on too many variables to get into here. But it won't make them more attentive to the Gospel proclamation's ultimate reality: Christ is present to us in the proclamation of the Gospel.

It would be wrong to cheat the People of God of their birthright by distracting them with a spectacle. Certainly the kids involved would benefit from the opportunity to reenact the Gospel, but doing it during Mass would make them less attentive to the Gospel's proclamation. Do it outside of Mass and they can grow in their appreciation of the story AND learn to be attentive to Christ's presence during the proclamation at Mass.

I speak from experience. Lots of experience - painful as well as uplifting.

Besides, if they want to do a pageant well, they needed to start at least a month ago (IMO).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 11:29 pm 
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Tell them to watch BELLS OF ST. MARY'S.

GKC

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 12:09 am 
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Quote:
Tell them to watch BELLS OF ST. MARY'S.

GKC


"Haaappy biiirrrrrrthdaaaayyy toooo Youuuuuu!"


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 8:09 am 
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Tazer Queen
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Hey, FoBg...if you want you can join the Catholic Music Director's list that this came from.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CatholicMusicDirector/
--Ann

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 11:16 am 
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Thanks!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 4:22 pm 
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Greetings,

Every year at our early Christmas mass we have a pageant before mass begins. It lasts about 1/2 hour. It is very prayerful and is done to prepare us for the mass, NOT done during the mass. At our late evening mass we have a 1/2 hour concert before mass begins. It is normally the same theme as the children's pageant.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 5:17 pm 
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Handmaids of the Lord
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juststartn wrote:
(esp as I had my oldest two with me, and at the end, SANTA came in with a birthday cake for "baby Jesus").


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2006 7:17 pm 
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Sons of Thunder
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In our parish we also have a 1/2 hour Christmas play before Mass with about 30 children aged 4 to 8 involved.

ie at 6:30 pm Christmas Eve followed by the 7pm Vigil Mass

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