The Richmond Register

Lifestyles & Community

December 1, 2012

The ‘worst kids in the history of the world’ teach us a lesson

RICHMOND — You’ve heard of the Herdmans, right? The worst kids in the history of the world. All six of them curse, cheat and smoke cigars. They bully other kids—and each other. They even set a dilapidated tool shed on fire once—then ate the firefighters’ donuts while they battled the blaze.

Fortunately, the unruly Herdmans are fictional, created by Barbara Robinson. In her book “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” the Herdmans come to church for the first time—to get free food. Through intimidation, they’re cast in the Christmas play even though they’d never heard of Jesus before, and they end up stealing the show.

It’s hard to imagine that this bunch of misfits could teach us a lesson about the true meaning of Christmas, but they do in their own bizarre way.

Imogene, as Mother Mary, thinks it’s a mother’s prerogative to name her baby whatever she wants. But she agrees to call the baby, Jesus, as an Angel instructed, instead of her choice, Willie.

The Herdmans are upset about tying the baby up in wadded up (swaddling) clothes and sticking him in a feeding trough. “Where are the welfare workers?” they wonder.

They’re outraged by evil King Herod being so jealous of Jesus that he ordered the baby to be killed. Ralph, as Joseph, offers to chop off Herod’s arms instead. Leroy wants to rename the play “Revenge at Bethlehem.”

Dissatisfied with presents the Wise Men bring, the Herdmans offer their own Christmas ham, from the welfare worker, as a more practical gift. And they refuse to take it back after the play is over.

At the end, everyone agrees the Herdmans made the Christmas story more meaningful because the worst children in the history of the world experienced Christ’s birth for the first time with a sense of wonderment. And they helped others recapture their own fascination with Jesus’ journey.

If you’re looking for a fresh perspective this holiday season, The First United Methodist Church is performing “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” Sunday, Dec. 9, at 6 p.m. in their Multi-Ministry Center.

Pastor Bruce Nettleton has turned the play version of the book into a musical. He’s written lyrics and music to six songs to accompany more traditional Christmas hymns. “Little Baby Jesus” reminds us:

Little Baby Jesus, sleeping in the stall,

We know you came to save us. You love us one and all,

Not just the rich and loveable, not just the privileged few,

Little Baby Jesus,

We love you.

Text Only
Lifestyles & Community
  • Brandon-Sears-c.jpg Beef Cattle Association field day is Thursday

    Make plans to attend the Madison County Beef Cattle Association field day on Thursday from 5 to 7:30 p.m. The event will take place at the farm of Dr. Eugene Bowling, 1437 Barnes Mill Road in Richmond. Signs will be posted.
    This meeting qualifies as a CAIP educational component.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • 04.23 JessaTurner1.jpg Eat local and eat with the seasons

    This week marks the 44th anniversary of Earth Day, and what could be more important to our survival than clean air, clean water and clean food?

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Amanda-Sears-c.jpg Proper care enables planting of Easter lilies

    Did you receive or purchase an Easter lily? If so, be sure to treat it right and you will be able to plant it outside this spring.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lisa Adams.jpg 4-H Camping Season Nears

    Hopefully, we have seen the last of the snow for the year, so now is the time for young people and their parents to begin making plans for an annual summer ritual, 4-H Camp.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick-Ham.jpg These things cause me concern for the future

    I was just thinking the other day about things that are happening in this country that do not bode well for the future.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • WP_20140419_001.jpg Cruisin’ with the Oldies

    With the sound of classic songs wafting through the air Saturday, hundreds of people took advantage of the summer-like temperatures and turned out for the Kirksville Community Center car show.

    April 21, 2014 9 Photos

  • 04.18 Food .jpg It’s egg party time

    I love this time of the year because eggs really do go down in price during the Easter season. I have some new recipes on how to fix eggs besides the coloring part.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • 04.18 Steaks.jpg Where’s the beef?

    Today, the American consumer has more money to spend on the widest variety of foods than at any other time in our history.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • 4.15 Eggstravaganza 1.jpg Easter bunny's ‛eggbeater’ will fly eggs to Richmond

    Who knew the Easter bunny could fly?

    Skeptics can come to the Easter Eggstravaganza in Richmond’s Irvine-McDowell Park on Saturday to see for themselves. However, the bunny still doesn’t fly in bad weather. But on Monday, temperatures in the 60s with partly cloudy skies were predicted for Saturday.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick-Ham.jpg We old folks have unique experiences

    A friend sent this to me by e-mail, and I thought my readers would enjoy it.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

AP Video
SKorea Ferry Toll Hits 156, Search Gets Tougher Video Shows Possible Syrian Gas Attack Cubs Superfans Celebrate Wrigley's 100th Raw: Cattle Truck Overturns in Texas Admirers Flock to Dole During Kansas Homecoming Raw: Erupting Volcanoes in Guatemala and Peru Alibaba IPO Could Be Largest Ever for Tech Firm FBI Joining Probe of Suburban NY 'Swatting' Call U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Raw: Violence Erupts in Rio Near Olympic Venue Raw: Deadly Bombing in Egypt Raw: What's Inside a Commercial Jet Wheel Well Raw: Obama Arrives in Japan for State Visit Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Motels Near Disney Fighting Homeless Problem Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye' S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Should Richmond rezone the southwest corner of Main Street and Tates Creek Avenue to B-1 (Neighborhood Business) with restrictions to allow construction of a financial services office?

     View Results