Children’s Christmas Pageant

Giving Dangerously

A unique holiday story giving us tools for today.

Giving Dangerously, a play that has been adapted from a collection of Christmas stories told in a small village in Nazi-occupied France, will be performed as a children’s Christmas play at Central Presbyterian Church on Sunday, December 9, as part of the morning worship service beginning at 10:30 a.m.

When France was under siege, occupied by Hitler’s troops, the people of the village of Le Chambon-sur-Lignon formed an underground network to rescue refugees, many of them Jews. In what has been called “a conspiracy of goodness,” they are credited with saving nearly 5,000 refugees, about 3,500 of them Jewish.

Pastor André Trocmé of the Protestant church in the mountain village was the spiritual leader of the resistance movement. One way he inspired the people of the village was by telling Christmas stories he wrote, many of them with couched references to the courage people need in extreme circumstances. Standing by a huge lighted Christmas tree, he told stories that stirred people to act with courage and generosity themselves.

Nobody in Le Chambon ever betrayed the resistance movement. Jewish refugees learned that Le Chambon was the one place in France where they were comparatively safe. Some were sheltered in homes in the village, some were helped to escape to Switzerland.

Eglise Protestante Unie du Chambon-sur-Lignon , the French church of Pastor André Trocmé whose stories inspired the pageant.

Eglise Protestante Unie du Chambon-sur-Lignon, the French church of Pastor André Trocmé whose stories inspired the pageant.

The sign above the door reads “Love One Another”

The sign above the door reads “Love One Another”

Pastor André Trocmé

Pastor André Trocmé

Trocmé’s stories have now been translated into English by his daughter, Nelly Trocmé Hewett, in the book Angels and Donkeys: Tales for Christmas and Other Times.

Jessica Jones, a member of Central Presbyterian Church, has adapted one of the stories as a play and is director of the children’s Christmas play at the church. The play will be presented in place of a sermon in the worship service.

Nelly Trocmé Hewett, who was a teenager when her parents were leading the effort to rescue Jews, came to the United States as an au pair and remained as a college student. She raised her three children in Minneapolis, where she taught French at prep schools. She is now retired and living in St. Paul.

Everyone is welcome!

Join us for worship on Sunday, December 9 at 10:30 a.m. to see the play “Giving Dangerously”.
For directions and parking information, go here.


nine lessons and carols

Sunday, December 16 - 10:30 a.m.
A special service of music celebrating the advent of Christ, presented by the Central Choir and guest instrumentalists.


Thursday, December 20 - 7:30 p.m.
Named “most imaginative classical holiday program” by the Star Tribune, and performed to overflow audiences for the past six years, The Schubert Club’s annual Songs for the Season program features winter songs and carols by more than a dozen Minnesota composers and songwriters. This year’s program features music composed and arranged by Abbie Betinis, Bob Dylan, Jayanthi Kyle, Neal & Leandra, and even John Denver, who temporarily made Minnesota home. This event is free and open to the public.

Caroling sunday

Sunday, December 23 - 10:30 a.m.
Join us as we light candles for peace, hope, joy and love with Anthony Healy, jazz pianist, Laura Betinis Healy, vocalist, and the Central Choir poviding music. All church caroling wll follow worship at the neighborhing Central Towers.

christmas eve worship

Monday, December 24
Worship at 4:00 p.m. with carols and a professional vocal quartet. 
Worship at 10:30 p.m. with candlelight, Central Choir, and organ. 
Musical prelude 15 minutes prior to worship.