St. Casimir’s to present Lessons & Carols

Published 7:33 pm Monday, December 10, 2018

When baby Layla Levine is carried in as baby Jesus at St. Casimir’s Lessons & Carols, she will be unaware of her family’s link to the past.  According to a press release, her grandmother, Ronda Allis, held her infant daughter and — together with her husband, Eric, — they portrayed the holy family 20 years ago.

Megan, Patrick and Layla Levine will add to the pageantry as once again a church tells the greatest story ever told, the release stated. Lessons & Carols will tell the stories leading up to the birth of Christ through scripture and song at 4 p.m. Sunday at St. Casimir’s Church.

St. Casimir’s has a long history of Christmas programs, the press release states.

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The Rev. Eugene Stenzel enlisted builders, welders and costume designers to present pageants. For 22 Christmases, families would come from miles around for Christmas Eve at St. Casimir’s Church. Over the years hundreds of parishioners have been dressed to portray shepherds, kings and the holy family.

When Stenzel left in 2009, parishioners found a new way to celebrate with Lessons & Carols. The format originated at King’s College in Cambridge, England. The first performance featuring nine scripture lessons accompanied by the choir was broadcast over British airwaves in 1918.

The format remains the same 100 years later.

Churches all over the world celebrate Advent with Lessons & Carols. St. Casimir’s parishioners have taken on the scripture lessons with some modifications. St Casimir’s choir, directed by Marti Yokiel and accompanied by Connie Stenzel, will provide most of the music.

The Wells Community Chime Choir, directed by Jan Johanson, along with Monica Bute on violin, will add another dimension with their musical gifts, the release states. Claire Schimek, will sing “Away in a Manger.”

After Lessons & Carols, the choir will head down to St. Casimir’s Church Hall, where they will continue the holiday festivities by serving a meal to all who can join them. A baked potato bar with all the fixings will be served free of charge. A freewill offering will be taken up for the Wells Area Food Shelf.