First Baptist presents ‘Faces of Christmas’

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 26, 2000

Features Editor

Nov. 25, 2000 10 PM

"The Faces of Christmas" will be familiar ones this year as First Baptist Church of Troy brings back a favorite tradition from the not-so-long-ago past.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Once again, the church will present a "Living Christmas Tree" musical. This year’s performance, titled "The Faces of Christmas," will be presented at 6 p.m. on Dec. 9 and 5 and 7 p.m. on Dec.10.

Frank Nihart, director of music at First Baptist Church, said the "Living Christmas Tree" was presented on an annual basis until about five years ago and it was a "natural" attraction because of its uniqueness.

"We wanted to bring back the tradition this year, but we decided to put together our own presentation instead of a prepackaged one," Nihart said. "The presentation, ‘The Faces of Christmas,’ features standard songs, such as ‘O Holy Night,’ traditional Christmas carols, two selections from "The Messiah" – the Hallelujah and Glory choruses – and also several contemporary songs."

"The Faces of Christmas" will be a multi-media presentation and will include a slide show which will direct the audience’s attention to the faces of the players in the Christmas story.

The original narration will encourage the audience to look into the faces of Mary, the shepherds and all of the others who were part of the Christmas story and contemplate their expressions and try to imagine what was going on in their minds, Nihart said.

The faces on the slides were taken from the film, "Jesus of Nazareth."

"The Faces of Christmas" will feature 60 singers and the organ, piano and keyboard.

Nihart said the "living Christmas tree" will be a green draped frame laced with lights and decorations, including fruits, magnolias and

dozens of poinsettias. The singers will wear gold lamé smocks.

Computerized lighting will add a special glow to the tree and it will be a "picture of beauty."

Nihart said several special "surprises" await those who attend "The Faces of Christmas," but he doesn’t want to reveal what they are.

Tickets are now available for all three performances and Nihart said, tickets are necessary to guarantee seating.

"There is no charge for the tickets and they may be picked up at the church office," he said. "We will be handing out 1,000 tickets for each performance and those seats will be held until 15 minutes before the performance begins. At that time, those seats will be made available to non-ticket holders."

"The Faces of Christmas" will be one of the events that gives meaning to the real reason for the season.

"We hope for a full house every night," Nihart said. "We believe everyone will receive a true blessing by being there."