Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever (audio)

One of my favorite Christmas movies growing up was The Best Christmas Pageant Ever and one day, I discovered the book.  It tells the story of a church that one year is invaded by the baddest kids in town and who decide they would like to be in the Christmas Pageant.  Everyone assumes that it will be a disaster but are surprised and delighted by the outcome.

I think I always related to the movie because I went to a church like this when I was little.  My mother and my sister and I were very involved in our church until we moved to a new town when I was 13 so I understand about having the same old kids in your Sunday school and doing the same thing year after year.  We didn't do a Christmas pageant but I knew girls like Alice Wendlekin, who is just bossy.  And we didn't have any Herdmans, but that was okay.

The nice thing about this book (and the movie) is that it emphasizes how most Christians take the Christmas story for granted and never really think about the deeper meaning behind it.  But since the Herdmans' had never been to church or heard about the birth of Jesus, they had questions and so made everyone think about it.  They are some mean kids but deep down seem decent enough, just neglected with too much time on their hands.

I listened to it this year, something I've never done and Elaine Stritch does the narration.  I was a little taken aback since the narrator is suppose to be around 9 and Ms. Stritch is obviously older than that.  It threw me off for the first little bit, but once I use to it so does a great job of giving everyone character.  The only thing is I can hear the actor's voices from the movie over her.  This would be a great book for a full cast to do.


  1. My mom read this to her 4th graders every year. I think she said she cried everytime! She'd kick me for this - but I haven't read it yet!

  2. Wow I remember this book! It's been a long time since I thought of it. What a great idea for a reread.


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