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Free Advent Skit: Santa Meets John the Baptist - Sermon and Worship resources by

Santa Meets John the Baptist
A skit by Frank Schaefer

Props: 4 card board signs:   APPLAUSE;  LAUGHTER;  CHEER;  BOO
            a Santa outfit (at the very least a beard and a hat (see picture)
            a plain "monk's" gown or robe, a pair of sandals (see picture)
            a table/chair for the host, seats for the guests  (see picture)

Cast:  Host (H) Santa (S), John Baptist (J) and a youth to hold up signs



(“Today” theme music playing) . . .

Youth announces excitedly: "Sunday Morning Live . . .with your host, pastor _____________ ." Today’s guests: John Baptist, Santa Claus

Enter host

Host: thank, you thank you, and good morning.  Today, we have some very special guests for you.  John Baptist, a modern day desert prophet. And our other guest, believe it or not, is Mr. Santa Claus.

Ladies and gentlemen, let’s greet them.

[a youth pops up holding up a sign, reading: APPLAUSE ] Music is kicking up again, John and Santa enter, take seat in chairs next to host's desk.

H: Good morning gentlemen.  Let me just ask you first, Santa, you don't actually claim to be the real Santa Claus, do you? I mean we all know that Santa is a popular legend.

S: Well, you hit the nail on the head when you mentioned legend.   You know, to every legend there is a true and historic fact; the person of Santa Claus, too, actually has roots in a real person who lived a long time ago, bishop Nicholas of Myra, and I represent him this morning.

H: Is your real name Santa Claus?

S: Sure, and Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer is waiting with the sled in the church's parking lot . . .

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  LAUGHTER

S (continued): No, of course not, you know perfectly well that I'm _____________ (actor's name).

H: So, just to fill in our audience this morning, what do you do dressed up as Santa Claus?

S: Well, I did it because you asked me, remember?  O.k. . . . getting back into the role here . . .  I’m dressed up as Santa this morning to share the origin of the Santa Claus legend and what Santa originally meant.

H: Before we get into your story, allow me to introduce our other highly interesting guest, John Baptist, who stands in the tradition of John the Baptizer.  Welcome, John.

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  APPLAUSE

J: Good morning.

H: What's your story, John?

J: I am representing a modern day prophet in the ancient line of desert prophets that started with John the Baptist.

H: that is undoubtedly a fascinating tradition to stand in, and your garb certainly seems in line with a desert person; but tell me, you don’t actually live in a desert, do you?

J: Well, there are different kinds of deserts.  You don't have to live in a geographic desert in order to follow in the desert prophet tradition, it's more a question of disciplined living.

H: So, we wouldn't expect you to feed on locusts and wild honey, like John the Baptist?

J: Wild honey, yes.  Locusts, no.  Not unless they’re chocolate-covered.

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  LAUGHTER

J (continued): No, seriously, we believe that people today need to restrain themselves from food and that’s what we do, we hold a strict diet.

H: Is that why you are so skinny, John?

J: Exactly, skinny and healthy. No offense, Santa, but do we really need all those cookies, the chocolate, the pastry, and so forth?

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  BOO

S: No offense taken, you eat your locusts and I endulge in my cookies and milk.

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  CHEER

H: O.k. moving right along, both of you have a special message about this season of Advent, you Santa because the St. Nicholas tradition is part of the church's Advent season and John because John the Baptist pops up in our Advent Scripture Readings.  Santa, what's your message to us in this Advent season?

S: My message is: recall the origin of the Santa tradition. Advent stands for being generous, especially to those less fortunate.

H: You mean Advent does not stand for shop till you drop, eat all you can, flashy decorations, and jolly music?

S: no,no,no. Bishop Nicholas in the 5th century became known as Santa in later history because of his generosity and care for the poor, the homeless, and the children.  That’s what Advent and Christmas are about.  Generously giving to the less fortunate.  We need to return to that attitude.

J: Well, I don’t disagree with that, Santa, but I must say there is more to Advent than caring for the less fotunate.

Advent should also be a time for true repentance.  A time for thinking our lives over in light of the beginning of a new world order--God's order.   The upcoming new year also gives us an opportunity to get our lives straight with God.

H: John, I’m curious. How do you say Christmas fits into Advent?

J: that’s just it.  Advent is supposed to be a preparation for Christmas, but nobody really observes Advent anymore.  We skip it and go directly to Christmas every year.

H: You mean Advent and Christmas are like Lent and Easter.

J:  that’s exactly what I’m saying. Celebrating Christmas without going through Advent is like celebrating Easter without going through Lent.

H: And what exactly should we do during Advent?

J: John the Baptist's message was clear: Turn back to God. The wonderful news about that is: we actually can turn, our guilt can be forgiven, we can start all over again--no matter how many times we have failed!

S: May I say something to this?  Because I see this message of turning very much connected with caring for others.  As Jesus once put it: the way we should live can be put in a nutshell: love God and love your neighbor as yourself!   So to me turning to God and giving generously to others go hand in hand.

H: Would you agree with that statement, John?

J: Yeah, that’s a good message. I can accept that.  It’s just . . . well, I might as well get it out! (Empathic) the whole Santa Claus thing bothers me.  I mean, think about it . . . aren't we fibbing to our children about Santa and his elves and Mrs. Santa and the reindeer.  For heaven’s sake we gave them all names.  It’s one elaborate make-believe story!  And then one day our children will find out that it is not real and they’ll go: “mom, dad, how could you pretend all these years?”

S: Yeah, I was devastated when someone told me that Santa wasn’t real.  I remember, I ran to my mom, and asked her: “is that true mom that Santa isn’t real?”

H: How old where you then?

S: I was forty.

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  LAUGHTER

H: (laughing) my question is: how do we deal with the Santa story in church?

J: (facetious) We could invite him and John the Baptist to a debate in church.

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  LAUGHTER

S: Seriously, I just talked to someone who shared that when she found out that Santa isn’t real, she went running to her mom.  And her mom, being a very wise woman, asked her: “what do you think Santa stands for?”   And this girl started to list things like: good family times, presents, joy, feeling good inside.  And then her mom said: “You see, darling, all of these things are real.  And with all of these things Santa can be somewhat real to us.”

J: You know, that isn’t bad.  Now I’m beginning to hear you.  You’re saying that we can share about Santa in church, if we explain what he really stands for.

S: Exactly.

H: What are some of these things?

S: That we should be generous and live Godly lives as did St. Nicholas of Myra.  Think about it: a whole legend grew around his godly attitude and his good deeds.

H: Yes, wouldn’t it be great if one day a legend would grow around us based on our godly attitude and good deeds?  I want to thank you both for being our special guests this morning.  That was really enlightening to me.   Take care. (To the audience) don’t go away, we’ll be right back after these messages.

Youth pops up with sign, reading:  APPLAUSE

(Theme music ends the skit).      Everybody exits