Earlier in the week, as I was preparing our worship space for today, something unexpected happened. I gently arranged all the pieces of the Nativity in their traditionally places – except one: Baby Jesus.

I looked everywhere – in the box it was stored in, in the closet where the box was stored, on the floor. I went to all our storage areas and pulled out every Nativity set the church ever possessed. The search was futile. Every set had its own Baby Jesus – except the one in the sanctuary.

I made the congregation aware of this, and after worship, many people offered to bring a Baby Jesus from home to complete the scene in church. Some thought I was kidding and that was the children’s message for the day. Some thought I was simply making a joke.

No joke. Baby Jesus is missing in the stable in our sanctuary. But I do hope, Jesus is not missing from our hearts!

St. Thomas UCC, Bethlehem worship audio 12/4 –


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