December 15, 1996
[This play was given by the Youth Clowns at a time Seekers Church was looking for a new home. All the actors are in whiteface.]
Set: Seekers worship, chairs in straight rows paralleling the piano and the door opposite the piano, with open space before the altar. An aisle between the rows on the piano side. A sign is on the cross, "Christmas 1997." Music is playing "We Three Kings of Orient Are."
[Enter the "3 Kings Package Delivery Service", each carrying a box wrapped in plain brown paper. They stand in front of the altar.]
- 1st King (Patrick):
- I have a package here for the Seekers Church.
- 2nd King (Brian):
- Me, too. And my instructions say that if they’re not at Massachusetts Avenue, then I should follow the star.
- 3rd King (Erica):
- I have a package for Seekers, too. But my address is nothing like yours. [Erica pulls open a scroll with Seekers’ home page address and displays it to everyone.]
- 1st King (Patrick):
- Well, there’s no one here, and I don’t see any star. What should we do?
- 2nd King (Brian):
- There’s a Starbucks around the corner. Why don’t we try there? [3 kings exit through doors.]
Scene: Overhead sign reads "Starbucks", altar becomes counter with coffee mugs, muffins, etc. Sarah is behind the counter, Susanna is sitting nearby with stack of hymnals underneath her chair when 3 kings reenter.
- Can I help you? Regular, Decaf, Café Mocha, Frappacino, Café au Lait, Irish Cream, Swiss Chocolate Almond, Hazelnut…. [etc. until Erica interrupts]
- 3rd King (Erica):
- Actually, we’re looking for Seeker’s Church. Do you know where we could find it?
- Sorry, never heard of them. But how about a croissant? Or maybe a blueberry muffin ….[again starts to babble until interrupted by Susanna.]
- 1st Seeker (Susanna):
- Did you say Seekers?
- Yeah! Do you know where we can find them?
- We have these packages for Seekers, but our directions just say to follow a star.
- Sorry, our congregation had to move earlier this year. I was down in El Salvador with ASAPROSAR when they did, so I have no idea where they are now. I was just at the old address, too, to drop off all of this hymnal they left at my house during a sing-along. Do you think you could take it along for me?
[Pulls out stack of hymnals from under her chair, one by one stacks them on top of Patrick’s box so he can no longer see in front of him.]
- Are you sure it’s one hymnal? Looks like a bunch to me. Maybe you better come with us. [Susanna removes the stack of books]
- Where should we look next?
- Crestar bank is right around the corner. Why don’t we try there? [All exit]
Scene: Overhead sign reads "Crestar Bank", altar becomes the loan officer’s desk, with nameplate, stapler, papers, etc. A few feet away is a second overhead sign reading "ATM", where Sol is standing, conducting a transaction with several grocery bags at his feet. Elizabeth is working busily at the desk when 3 kings and Susanna enter.
- Excuse me, would you happen to have any information concerning Seeker’s Church?
- Banker (Elizabeth):
[Looks up for the first time] Seeker’s Church…. Hmmm…. Sounds familiar…. [Checks a few papers] Ahhh, yes, we turned them down for a loan a few months ago. Sorry. [Returns to work].
- Well, do you have their address?
- [Does not look up] No.
- A phone number?
- [Again, does not look up] No.
- A name? Anything? It’s very important we find Seeker’s Church this afternoon- [Upon hearing "Seekers", Sol turns around. Elizabeth continues working and does not look up.]
- You guys looking for Seekers? [He recognizes Susanna as he approaches the group.] Astrid! How have you been? [Looks from her to the 3 Kings, then back.] What are you doing?
- We’re looking for Seekers. It’s a long story, but we need to get these packages there, but we don’t know where to find them. I was in El Salvador when they moved, so I don’t know where to find them either.
- Sorry, I haven’t been in months. I’ve been spending all my time waiting tables at Potter’s House. By the time I got free day, Seekers was gone! I couldn’t find them anywhere.
- There’s a surprise.
- Do you mind if I come along? I have this new idea for coffee hour… [Pulls boxes of Twinkies and Ho-Hos and several packages of Kool-Aid from the grocery bags.]
- Twinkies, Ho-Hos and Kool-Aid! Great idea! [3 kings give each other strange looks]
- [Looks up, clearly annoyed] This is a place of business, not a social gathering. Would you please take this outside? [Returns to work]
- [Group heads towards double doors. Jonathan enters door by piano]
- Where next?
- Let’s ask a cabdriver. [Sees Jonathan.] Cabby!!
- Yeah, where are you heading?
- We’re looking for a star. We have packages to deliver and we were told to look for a star.
- There’s a Star Street two blocks over. You could try there.
Scene: Overhead sign reads "Star Street". Elizabeth enters. Group enters through piano doors
- Hey Elizabeth! Long time no see!
- What are you doing?
- [slightly exasperated] We’re from the 3 Kings Shipping Company. We’re supposed to deliver these packages to Seekers, the only problem being we can’t seem to find this church! [Very exasperated].
- Sorry, I can’t help. I stayed an extra day at the October Dayspring overnight, and when I got back, the Seekers were gone!
- Sounds familiar.
- [gives him a dirty look] Listen, let me run inside real quick – [Elizabeth runs out main doors, reenters with huge garbage bag]
- Oh no…
- What is that?
- I was cleaning up from the overnight, and I found all of this stuff that people left…. [pulls objects out of the bag one at a time] Let’s see…. A sleeping bag, a soccer ball, a Halloween costume, a box of spaghetti, someone’s sock [makes face]…. Anyway, will you take this along for me? [Plops the bag on top of Brian’s box, he staggers and nearly falls over. Elizabeth quickly takes back the bag] Maybe I better come along. Where should we look next?
[Jonathan enters door by piano]
- [Calling] I see you found Star Street. Was this the right place?
- [Calling back] No, but thanks for asking. [To the group] I’m tired. I say we go back to the office and see if we can get some help on this address.
- Good idea.
[Jonathan exits. All bend down to pick up their various packages or have backs to the piano door except Brian]
[The angel (Lauren] enters through the piano door, carrying a star on a pole]
- [Looks at Lauren, looks back to the group] Hey guys, I hate to say it….
[All stand up, see Lauren]
- We’re seeing things…. Oh my gosh, etc. etc.
- That must be the right one. Umm, hello!! [Erica tries to flag down Lauren, who has been making loops around the sanctuary until she is summoned. Everyone approaches the angel.]
- [somewhat pathetically] Please help us. We’re trying to find the Seekers Church, and we’ve been looking all morning. Do you know where we can find the Seekers?
[Lauren opens the banner: "Wherever three are gathered together in my name…"]
- I get it! The Seekers address is wherever the Seekers are gathered. Sometimes it’s a mission group at someone’s home, or at a Hope and a Home meeting. Sometimes it’s at an overnight at Wellspring or Rolling Ridge. Sometimes it's with Help the Homeless group in El Salvador with Dr. Guzman. Or at a Faith at Work board meeting. Or a School of Christian Living class.
- Susanna, Sol, and Elizabeth:
- Wow… The angel’s right…. We should have known. Etc., etc.
- Well, there’s three of you here now, so why don’t you sign for these packages? [He hands Susanna a clipboard, she signs her name. Sol opens the first package]
- It’s a computer! What are all these webs? [Tears off webs; reads note on computer screen] Visit the Seekers on-line at http://www.church of the savior.seekerscommunity. lloyd.wood.bergen-bartel……etc.etc.
- [Opening her gift, pulling out stacks and stacks of colored paper] What is all this paper? [Pulls out baby piano] It’s a new piano for Seeker’s new home!
- [Opening her gift, pulls out wall hanging] What is this? [Reads] "Top 10 reasons you know you’re a Seeker:
|10. You can't understand what's on the altar.
9. Going to the bathroom doubles your Stairmaster exercise.
8. You can ignore the quieting bell at 11:30 a.m.
7. You get a new Christmas message every year.
6. You are old enough to preach when you can see over the lectern.
5. You drink grape juice out of midget cups.
4. You like Manning's coffee.
3. You don't know/can't remember/can't decide if God is a He or She.
2. It takes you longer to decide how you'll decide than to decide.
1. You can't explain your church to friends.
- I’m not going to ask.
- Hey, let’s sing. Grab a hymnal [Everyone grabs a hymnal out of Susanna’s bag] Page 65, it’s my favorite! [Everyone opens a different hymnal, starts singing different songs] No, no, the one with the blue cover [Still singing different songs] With the blue pages.
[All Sing "I Am the Church", invite congregation to join in, then sing "We Wish You a Merry Christmas]
1st King – Patrick
2nd King – Brian
3rd King – Erica
1st Seeker – Susanna
2nd Seeker – Sol
3rd Seeker – Elizabeth
Starbucks Girl – Sarah
Banker – Elizabeth
Taxi driver – Jonathan
Angel – Lauren