christmas eve at the church i grew up in

With the exception of perhaps a year or two, I have practically celebrated Christmas Eve in the same way ever since I was born, in a small Chinese speaking church called St Michael's that I grew up in.

This year however, things were a bit different. While I have always dreamed of being at the center stage or at least the major character of some performance, the chance of doing so always eluded me year after year for various reasons. It's kinda sad, I admit, but I guess as an English educated person in a Chinese church, chances are hard to come by. Until this year, that is.

It seems that the stars were in favor for the returning Singaporean student this year, as I was "arrowed" (the Singaporean term of being shoved the responsibility of) to be one of the four emcees for the annual Christmas countdown celebration of my church. The story goes that while my buddy and sister was discussing about the script this year, he thought that I would make a good laughing stock for audience during the celebration. And since there were no strong objections from the main church committee, I was then officially inaugurated as the fourth emcee for the year 2012.

behind the scenes: David (my best buddy for more than 10 years already), my sister Lydia, Yeemun and me

Like most of our Christmas Eve Countdowns, the night was filled with performances from the various wings or "departments" to keep the audience going. After the four of us were introduced, the Praise and Worship team kicked off the night with their own modern rendition of Christmas songs.

a very youthful P&W team indeed

Following that, there were also performances from the Golden Circle group, the Sunday School children, the drama team and also our very own youth fellowship. Dances dominated the majority of genre of performances this year and I have to admit, it's been a while since we have so many dances on one night in our church already, and I'm secretly happy for it, because dancing is one of the performances that take the most effort to organize and coordinate.

no matter the skills, as long as we look cool everything is fine!

Perhaps the most memorable part of the night was how it reminded me of my life 4 years ago before I left for Singapore. Life back then was much simpler with less worries and so much more fun. To be honest, I lost a bit of myself while in Singapore and thanks to this emcee opportunity, I had the chance to reclaim some of the lost part back. The confident, lame joke spewing Cantonese speaking idiot who flirts around. Oh, how I missed him.

In general, I enjoyed myself that night, although there were parts where I stuttered on stage (something that did not happen last time). Watching the cute children performed made me go "Awww..."

aint they cute?

I had fun making the fool out of myself on stage...

crazy poses are my specialty

Our own version of Santa Claus made me laugh...

like a celebrity, he is

But most importantly, I was touched to see that it was not only us who were having fun, but the audience too...

during one of our mass game

To be honest, this is how I think Christmas should be. Spending it together with the people that matters, giving joy to others, that is what is important, despite what different beliefs we may have.

I am glad that I chose to come back for Christmas, despite hesitating about it initially. I needed this little break from everything. Come to think of it, trips back to Ipoh are like my little confidence boosters now. Funny to think how different culture have such a strong impact on different people. But I guess as long as I had fun, I shan't complain very much. In essence, my Christmas was awesome!


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