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Charles, Julie and Ellis Milling assumed the roles of Joseph, Mary and Baby Jesus during last year's drive-thru Nativity story at St. Joseph’s Episcopal Church in Boynton Beach. This year’s guests again will drive through campus and use a prayer sheet to follow along. Christmas hymns and carols will be broadcast between stations at the Dec. 24 event. Photo provided

By Janis Fontaine

If you’re planning your holidays, don’t forget the reason for the season. There are in-person (and virtual) church services and more this year, thank God (ahem).
For the second year, St. Joseph’s Episcopal Church in Boynton Beach will host a coronavirus-safe, family-friendly, drive-thru telling of the Nativity story through a series of vignettes with live actors and maybe even some animals.
Here are the details on St. Joe’s pageant and other local holiday programming:

St. Joseph’s Episcopal Church — 3300 S. Seacrest Blvd., Boynton Beach
Christmas Eve drive-thru Nativity story: 4-5 p.m. Guests drive through campus and use a simple prayer sheet to follow along. You can download it at www.stjoesweb.org. Christmas hymns and carols will be broadcast between stations. There is also a stay-in-your-car Communion station at the end.
Christmas Eve Unplugged outdoors: 6:30 p.m. Live music by St. Joe’s unplugged musicians, and a service with Eucharist. Seating is provided or bring your own.
Christmas Eve indoor mini-concert: 9:30 p.m. followed by 10 p.m. Eucharist, similar to a midnight Mass, with organ music and vocals by the Rev. David Clyle Morse. Masks required.
Christmas Day service: 9:30 a.m. with Morse playing the organ and leading Christmas carols. Masks required.

Advent Lutheran Church — 300 E. Yamato Road, Boca Raton
Christmas Eve: family service 4 p.m.; contemporary service 6 p.m.; traditional service 11 p.m.
Christmas Day: 10 a.m. service

First United Methodist Church — 625 NE Mizner Blvd., Boca Raton
Christmas Eve: early service 5 p.m.; traditional service 7 p.m.

St. Lucy Catholic Church — 3510 S. Ocean Blvd., Highland Beach
The life-size Nativity will be on display through the holidays, beginning Dec. 8.
Christmas Eve Mass: 7 p.m.
Christmas Day Mass: 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.

First Presbyterian Church — 33 Gleason St., Delray Beach
Christmas Eve:
“Carols and Candles”: 5 p.m. with the Rev. Greg Rapier and a time for the children.
Traditional candlelight service: 7 p.m. with Dr. Doug Hood delivering the message and a time for the children.
Traditional candlelight service: 9:30 p.m. with Hood.
All services will also be livestreamed on the church website.
Other events:
• Deacons Christmas Tree: The deacons are accepting $25 donations to purchase gift cards for under-resourced children at five local agencies: Achievement Center for Children & Families, Adopt-a-Family of the Palm Beaches, Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse, Boys and Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County, and Milagro Center.
• Holly House Gift Shoppe: Find handcrafted gifts made by the Holly House Ladies, a ministry of the church, from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and Thursdays and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 19.

St. Gregory’s Episcopal Church — 100 NE Mizner Blvd., Boca Raton
Christmas Eve:
Christmas pageant/service 4:30 p.m.; choral Eucharist and sermon 7:30 p.m.; music prelude 10:30 p.m.; choral Eucharist and sermon 11 p.m.
Other event:
• Holly-Versary holiday brunch and celebration: 11:30 a.m. Dec. 12. The most popular event of the Christmas season at St. Gregory’s is back with brunch, auctions and family fun, including adult-supervised crafts for children. Get tickets ($15-$280) at www.eventbrite.com.

St. Paul’s Episcopal Church — 188 S. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach
Christmas Eve services: 5, 7:30 and 11 p.m.
Christmas Day: 10 a.m. service
Other events:
• A Festival of Lessons and Carols: 3 p.m. Dec. 12. The Chancel Choir performs. Freewill offering. https://musicstpauls.org.
• A New Year’s Eve concert, 4 p.m. Dec. 31, will feature the Delray String Quartet.

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