Location: Bethlehem sub-region 12A – field with tree by brook, the one with the half-ditch, not the full ditch
Time: Upon the Midnight
Shepherds report they passed a quiet evening of general abiding in the field along with some partial abiding in the half-ditch. Later, while shepherds watched their flocks by night all seated on the ground, there was a lively discussion about who among them had once again forgotten to bring the lawn chairs.
Lo, or at roughly half-past lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, according to Shepherd 94. It is unclear how the coming upon them came to be. Shepherd 94 declares that the alleged angel appeared as descended from Heaven. Shepherd 22, on the other hand, states that the individual hopped over the brook while munching on a bag of Manna Mix.
Authentication of the individual’s angelic status could not be verified as our investigation indicates that no shepherds present carried out Protocol 56B, Verse 12: When thereby a stranger shall come upon you whilst you abideth and/or watcheth and/or tendeth your sheepth, so then shall you demand of the stranger some ID.
Shepherd 94 further reports that the glory of the Lord shone all about them, thereby proving that the visitor was indeed angelic in nature. Said glory of the Lord was described by shepherds as a sort of glow. No further details were provided as shepherds began cracking each other up by repeating “the glowy of the Lord.”
Shepherd 116 then says the “angel” told them to “chill” because he was bringing news about some good tides of great joy [surfing reference? unclear].
This was followed by a birth announcement.
The shepherds were then given directions by the “angel” to a barn somewhere in town where the baby was to be located wrapped like a sausage in a food trough.
At this point, it should be mentioned that investigators have been unable to determine conclusively whether any or all shepherds on duty at Flock 3482 at the time of the incident had been smoking copious amounts of myrrh.
Transcript of statement by Shepherd 94: “Suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.’” Our investigation revealed that The Heavenly Host is the name of a Judeah-based supergroup formed by members of Lyre Lyre, The Babble-Ons and Blame It On Ezekiel.
After inquiring with their manager, Frank “Incense” Solomon, we learned that the band’s caravan had overturned in a half-ditch on the very evening of the incident while on their way to perform at a bar mitzvah in Bethlehem. Further investigation reveals that Shepherd 94’s statement is strikingly similar to lyrics from The Heavenly Host’s hit psalm, “What A Friend We’ll Have in Jesus.”
Shepherd 116 then declared that it came to pass that the angels were gone away from them into Heaven – Heaven being the name of a nearby pub.
A discussion ensued and the shepherds hastily followed the directions given to them by the “angel” vis-à-vis the barn-based birth, which resulted in reports of multiple disturbances at multiple stables, the angelic directions being somewhat vague.
The shepherds claim they did eventually come upon such a baby and have not stopped talking about it since. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds, resulting in several HR complaints for proselytizing in the workplace.
And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them. By then the entire Flock 3482, which they had abandoned to go baby-hunting at the behest of a heavenly being, had wandered off or been eaten.
Investigators have recommended that the shepherds of Flock 3482 be suspended without pay or access to the half-ditch. Shepherds are appealing, arguing they should not have been watching their flocks by night in the first place as it was a statutory holiday.
Made it this far? You might also like this old bit of audio — or something from the ghost of Christmas… pastoral.
The dudes abideth. You always read of shepherds crook, it’s good to hear a tale of the gormless but honest herdspeople, no doubt illiterate, yet when they get to a manger, able to tell the cattle are lowing and not lo’ing. Merry stuff, Ross, gladsome even!
Yeah, bit of the old classic Frank Incense, the best. Mryhh-iment indeed! Merry Christmas to you both, and to all a good night!
All the best, Bill.
All the wurst, it seems!
It’s kind of a lo-ing story. All the best, Robert.
Happy Boxing Day, Ross. i’ve played that audio clip for three people so far and all of us love it. i’m still trying to get a flight back to New York to visit my parents they keep getting canceled, will try it again tomorrow.
I had such fun doing my radio pieces, though now I wonder how I managed. Ah, to be in my… 40s again?
Hope you get home soon. It’s been a nightmare travel season.
Definitely could have happened that way. Merry Christmas!
Nicely done, if a tad sacrilegiously. (No worries, not a follower of Flock 3482. By the way, is that number significant of any bible reference or just random?) That was definitely some good reporting. I hope the Shepherds find good representation to refute the charges of dereliction of duty. Or at least get access to the half-ditch in reparation.
Random, although that would have a fun Easter egg. (Christmas egg?)
All the best!