The Innkeeper

By Reg Kenny


A script to use at a Christmas banquet after the meal. The style is light and humorous. An Innkeeper walks among his guests, commenting on the busyness of the season, and the nation's hopes for a Messiah (but missing the point of Mary and Joseph's arrival).
Note: The Innkeeper can ad lib and adjust the wording according to where the guests are from. The two children can wear beards to look like the Innkeeper, and perhaps have blacked out teeth to be seen when they smile. One person is needed off stage to make sound effects.


Moishe, Miriam (two children)


Innkeeper: Sweet potato latkas! Look at all the people! Every table, every room here in my inn is full! I bet every place here in Bethlehem is packed. And still they keep coming.


Innkeeper: We're full! Go Away!
Here, let me get that for you. Try not to be so messy. You got more food on your face than you had on your plate…which is just a little less than you now have on the floor. Whoops! Who is goosing me? Sorry.
It is so crowded. I have never seen it this busy. If I would have a hundred rooms, still it would not be enough. So many travelers have made their way to Bethlehem. And some people, they think they have to bring everything with them: Their sheep, their goats, and their cows. Oh, the cows! I have never seen so many cows. Well…maybe at last Friday night Bingo. Ugh.
It is so crowded!


Innkeeper: We're full! Go Away!
And you know, with this many people, you see all kinds. Like the one family I got staying in room 14A. I think they are allergic…to soap! Ugh! I bet you could count their ages by the number of rings they would leave around the bathtub.
And one guy I saw downtown. It looked like he had actually shaved off his beard, on purpose! Can you believe that? What is this world coming to? Next thing you know we will be seeing women walking around wearing pants!
Ah yeah. You get all kinds. But you get to meet people from all kinds of places. We got guests here from as far away as Joppa, some from Jericho, a few from Jerusalem…You there! What is the name of your hometown?
(Reply: "Keswick". Or wherever)
Keswick? You are keswickian??? You should have told me that when you came in! We have special treatment for those who are from Keswick. For you, everything in my in my inn is cash up front. No credit for you!


Innkeeper: We're full! Go Away!
Ah now look: your drinks go in your mouth or stay in your glass. You don't need to share them with the table cloth!
All of these tables to serve, I can't do all of this work alone. Moisha! Miriam! Those are my children. They are good kids but maybe just a little bit lazy, you know? Where did they run off to? Moisha! Miriam!

Mo, Mir: Yes Poppa?

Innkeeper: Ah, there they are. Some people see a little family resemblance, eh? And when they smile they look just like their momma. Children! I told you to wash these dishes but they don't seem very clean.

Mo: It was the best we could do with cold water.

Mir: Yeah, and cold water doesn't get dishes really clean you know.

Innkeeper: You cleaned them all with cold water?


Mo: Coldwater, be quiet!

Innkeeper: I just don't want to know.


Innkeeper: Moisha! I am tired of listening to all this knock knock knock on the door. I want you to take your sister out front and if you see anyone coming, what are you going to say?


Innkeeper: Exactly. Now do it.
Ah, my children. Sometimes I wonder what will become of them. You do your best, you know? You work hard, try to teach them right from wrong, try to give them what you can. But times are tough and prices, they keep going up! Lamp oil is now 84 cents a litre? I think we are all going to freeze in the dark.
And taxes? Of course you know about taxes. I mean, that is why Bethlehem is so busy these days. So our head of state can have us counted. And we are only being counted so we can be taxed some more. Oh yeah, the more the better. It is just 7, 8, 9, 10,…another one. Oh yeah, but it is all just "kaching, kaching" for our "great" head of state.
"Great head of state". Hah! I could find a better head in field of cabbage! But…we must keep those kind of words to our selves, huh? Our Roman oppressors do not take kindly to words spoken against their leader.
You know, what we need is a leader of our own. Someone strong, someone brave, who will not be pushed around by anyone. Someone sent by God to lead God's people. Is this not the very thing that God has promised us for these very days.
Prophet after prophet has told us of this. It is written in the sacred scriptures. God's word has told us to expect the coming of the Messiah for this time in history. And he is to come from right here in Bethlehem: the promised one of God who will lead His people into a new life. A new king in the line of David sent from God himself.
You know, I have often imagined it. I imagine seeing him ride in on a big white horse, covered in gold and jewels. No one will be able to stand up to him. All will either flee or fall before his great sword. Hah! Hah! Hah!
Or…perhaps not. Perhaps it will be much different than that. Perhaps the Messiah will be much different than we expect. After all, look at King David. God chose him to be our nation's greatest king, a great warrior. But was he the biggest and strongest in his family? No! He was the youngest and the smallest. But that is whom God chose. No, God's ways are not our ways. The Messiah may not be like we expect.
God said the Messiah would come. He will be a gift to all the world. His kingdom will never end. And He will lead His people to a new and better life. And where will this life lead if we do not become part of that kingdom?
God said the Messiah would come. Ah, I just pray He would come!


Innkeeper: Go away! We are full.

Mo: Poppa, there is a man and a woman at the door.

Mir: And the woman is going to have a baby!

Innkeeper: A baby? My children, what year is this?

Mo, Mir: (look at each other) I don't know.

Innkeeper: I don't know either. But I do know this: it will be a long, long time before anyone invents something called "disposable diapers". This inn has full laundry service. Think about that. Now, you are to go to the door, see the nice man and the nice lady who is going to have a baby and tell them what?

Mo: (sad) We're full.

Mir: (sad) Go away.

Innkeeper: Right. …What? I have no choice. There is no room at the inn. …oh…Moisha! Miriam! Tell them…tell them they can find shelter in the stables. It is the best I can do. What do you expect? Things are not always like we expect: Like King David. Like the Messiah. Like Life! But, no matter how life turns out, the important thing is, the Messiah is coming to you. And He too is not what you expect. Will you turn him away? Or will you follow him to a new and better life?
Ah, it is late. Moisha! Miriam!

Mo, Mir: Yes Poppa?

Innkeeper: We have a special guest here from Keswick. Be sure to count the spoons at his table.
We're watching you.

Mo, Mir: (scowl, point)


© Copyright Reg Kenny, all rights reserved.
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