Don’t forget to spend time with your children and don’t let arguments ruin a good party.
Those were the messages of two one-act plays staged Tuesday evening by drama club members from the Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church in Ludowici.
The group traveled to Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church in Groveland to present the plays written by Macedonia’s own church member Mildred Elder, who is a retired high school English teacher.
Elder, who appeared red-carpet ready in a green suit, sparkly beads and a hat decorated with peacock feathers, spoke briefly about her love of writing.
“I write most of my plays,” she said. “When I sit down and think of something that exists in a community … it doesn’t take long to write a play if you have in mind what you have to say.”
About 50 people braved the near-freezing temperatures and shuffled into the warm, well-lit church to watch the traveling drama group perform the skits, filling almost every pew.
The congregation opened the evening by singing one stanza of “Joy to the World” while actors prepared backstage to make their entrances on the set.
Missionary Donna Brewton welcomed the group and said “I’m going to say this: Watch out Tyler Perry.”
The first act, which was staged by an all-male ensemble, was titled “For the Love of Mankind.” The cast of eight sent a clear message that parents must spend more quality time with children.
Adolphus Farlow played a busy father who works two jobs and is too consumed with his professional life to realize his son is experimenting with drugs and may lose his sports scholarship to college.
Farlow grew up in the church and said he loves acting, especially when a good message is involved.
“It’s real-life issues,” he said. “Now it’s about family and making sure the kids know the story about Christmas.”
The second play, “Good Will Toward Women,” focused on the importance of positive female friendships. The plot had one woman getting all her mutual friends together at a Christmas Eve party where they apologized for various wrongdoings and forgave one another.
Elder said she wrote the play with the intention of sharing messages that are relevant to real-life situations that people often experience.
“We fall out with people at church and many times it is because of some slight misunderstanding,” she said.
Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church has been staging plays during the holiday season for years, but the acting troupe just started taking their shows on the road a few years ago, traveling to churches in surrounding areas.
“Christmas is all about giving and what we want to do is share the good news,” Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church’s Rev. Victor C. Brewton said. “We want to share the gospel with everyone we can.”
Brewton said although the message is important, he also wants church members to enjoy one another’s company.
“I want them to enjoy the play and get more into the Christmas spirit,” he said. “Coming together and fellowshipping gives them that feeling.”