I have a role in my church's Christmas play "Merry Christ-Mess: Beyond Time". It all takes place in a Christmas storage room, the messy "Room 211", and involves a narrator, two cleaning women, and a host of Biblical characters from the original First Christmas. The theme of the play is "God can turn a mess into a message."
We don't have a very large congregation, so parts of the play had to be cut out since there weren't a lot of actors available. I was originally going to play a Wise Man but was recast as Shepherd #2. That's okay; the shepherds were the first to hear about the birth of Jesus and the Wise Men didn't show up until two years later.
Two little girls in our cast, Emma and Emily, play little church mice who have one spoken line: They are supposed to shout, "WE LOVE JESUS!" However, the girls must have been too shy to speak in their "outside voices" because they just stood there and giggled a little bit. They are also supposed to sing "Yes, Jesus Loves Me" and they only did that when the grownups in the cast prompted them. I'm sure they'll be fine by showtime.
Another cast member, Raul, is playing the "mean old innkeeper" who gave Joseph and Mary the barn in which they had Jesus. He defends himself saying there really was no room at the inn, which was already full of scoundrels and scalawags--not a proper place for a woman about to give birth.
I play one of three shepherds who get lost on the way to see the newborn King. I'm also the crankiest of the bunch, telling my fellow shepherds to hurry up and get to Bethlehem because we shouldn't leave the sheep untended for very long.
Speaking of cranky, our play's director Santos is also the annoyed Narrator who has to keep things going with the Christmas story; Santos' wife Cassie and our pastor's wife Roberta play the cleaning ladies forced to work on the holidays. And the Holy Family is played by our pastor's son and the church's musical director P.J., his wife Nicole and their baby son Quinn. Quinn behaved himself during rehearsal but if anything happens, there's always a baby doll for a stand-in.
You know, I haven't done a play since grade school, and our little production isn't fancy, yet I'm already having a good time. I'm so glad I volunteered. And playing the cranky Shepherd #2 is a hoot!