A joyous ray of Sunshine brightens St. Mary’s program

Jada Johns, who portrayed Mary in the St. Mary’s Christmas program, said she had no problems keeping Sunny Lee happy during the baby’s appearance as Jesus.

By Seth Schmidt

And it came to pass, that a chubby-cheeked, bundle of joy named “Sunny” helped bring the Christmas story to life at St. Mary’s School Sunday.

Five-week-old Trinity Sunshine Lee, who has the nickname “Sunny,” basked in the program’s starring role as the Baby Jesus.

“There’s something special about having a baby in the program,” said Jean Schmidt, one of the volunteers who helped direct the Christmas pageant.

“It was such a moving experience to watch Sunny up there on stage,” said the baby’s mother, Nicole Lee. “I had tears in my eyes.”

Normally, when Mary and Joseph make their entry at the annual St. Mary’s program, a plastic baby-doll must suffice as the Baby Jesus. But Sunday, a cherubic, baby-face peeked from the swaddled bundle cradled by Mary.

Sixth-grader Jada Johns, who played Mary, expertly rocked Sunny in her arms during the manger scene, after deftly being handed the baby through a side-stage curtain.

“She was really good,” said Jada, about the Baby Jesus.


Actually, Sunny Lee is a girl, as the St. Mary’s pageant used some poetic license in casting the infant as Jesus.  But little Sunny seemed non-plused about the challenge of depicting a boy, sleeping contentedly through most of the program. Like the Baby Jesus in “Away in a Manger,” no crying was made amidst visits from shepherds, angels, and wise men.

For more on this article, see this week’s Headlight-Herald.