Reading of the Best Christmas Pageant Ever recited to packed church

The heartwarming message behind the reading of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever was played and shared by local readers when they urged audience members to listen and use their imaginations. The book reading was held at the Trinity United Church in Preeceville on December 12.

Sheila Ivanochko, Sheila Klebeck and Mikes Russell told the story in a relaxed setting set in front of the Christmas tree. "The evening was excellent," said Ivanochko, who also directed.

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 "The audience really enjoyed themselves listening to the tales of the Herdman children. The evening was filled with laughter, tears and experiencing the feeling of what Christmas really means as they followed the children in the book. The reading was a little different approach but it was a very successful and fun evening," she said.

"The evening had audience members sitting back, relaxing and listening to the funny shenanigans that the children featured in the book get into and how they end up believing in Christmas."

The play replaced the traditional reading of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol just for this year as way to switch things up and offer a quiet heartwarming evening filled with laughter, Ivanochko stated.

The combined United Church children's choir was accompanied by Bonnie Lisitza on piano as the children sang, Getting Nothing for Christmas; Away in the Manager; March of three Kings; Zumba, Zumba and Silent Night. The audience joined in the singing of Silent Night in the last two verses. The choir was directed by Carla Olson. Members of the choir were Olivia, Maggie and Elizabeth Ivanochko, Nevaeh Rudachyk, Sarah and Claire Masko, Franz and Fiona Pinaroc and Savannah Olson,

The evening concluded with hot apple cider and goodies.

Laughs abound in this best-selling Christmas classic by Barbara Robinson, stated the books web site.

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever follows the outrageous shenanigans of the Herdman siblings, or “the worst kids in the history of the world.” The siblings take over the annual Christmas pageant in a hilarious yet heart-warming tale involving the Three Wise Men, a ham, scared shepherds, and six rowdy kids.

Ralph, Imogene, Leroy, Claude, Ollie, and Gladys Herdman are an awful bunch. They set fire to Fred Shoemaker’s toolshed, blackmailed Wanda Pierce to get her charm bracelet, and smacked Alice Wendelken across the head. And that’s just the start. When the Herdmans show up at church for the free snacks and suddenly take over the Christmas pageant, the other kids are shocked. It’s obvious that they’re up to no good. But Christmas magic is all around and the Herdmans, who have never heard the Christmas story before, start to re-imagine it in their own way.