Wheaton church members happy to celebrate Christmas Eve in traditional way this year

Those celebrating with Christmas Eve prayer say it 'feels good'
WHEATON, Ill. (WLS) -- Many churches are holding services Friday for Christmas Eve.

In Wheaton, one church is celebrating in a traditional way, and some there say "that feels good."

It's truly a Christmas Eve tradition: Every year, the Gary United Methodist Church in Wheaton holds special services all day to celebrate the holiday.

Earlier in the day, the children put on a Christmas pageant play, recreating the story of Jesus' birth.

Each child was dressed as different characters in the play.

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Sheep, shepherds, angels and, of course, Mary and Joseph were all in attendance.

"I just think it's so cool because you're having the son of God, and that means so much, and I'm just so excited," said Taylor Westcomb, 10.

They'll also have their traditional Christmas Eve Mass at 8 p.m.

And at 9 p.m., they'll sing the beloved "Silent Night" outside.

It's something a church organizer said is much needed after a year like this.

"This is the most traditional of a Christmas pageant that we've done in awhile, but after a year of the pandemic, it's felt good to come back to that root story," said Carey Williams Bebar, Gary United Methodist Church director of Children's Ministry

So if you'd like to join Friday for any of the services, you can bundle up and light a candle to celebrate Christmas Eve.
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