Act One, Scene 2

Segment 2.5

(Mary’s home.)

MARY: Joseph! Is that you, Joseph? Come in.

(Joseph enters.)

JOSEPH: Mary, it’s good to see you back. (pause) I have to tell you I’m a little uneasy about being here before the wedding.

MARY: I understand. (pause) Elisabeth had her child.

JOSEPH: Oh, she did?

MARY: Yes. They sent word. A boy.

JOSEPH: Oh! Well, that’s good to hear.

MARY: Yes, he’s healthy and strong, and Elisabeth is doing just fine.

JOSEPH: Good. What about the father, the priest? I heard that he—

MARY: Zacharias. . .


MARY: Well, he couldn’t hear, and he couldn’t speak, either.

JOSEPH: So what happened?

MARY: An angel . . . appeared to him.

JOSEPH: An angel?

MARY: Yes, he told him Elisabeth was going to have a child, and he even told him the name. His name is John.27

JOSEPH: John. They didn’t name him after his father?


JOSEPH: Why not?

MARY: Well, that’s what I wanted to talk to you about. At the time of the circumcision, Zacharias finally spoke. He said the child would be called the prophet of the highest, to go before the face of the Lord and to prepare His ways.28

JOSEPH: How did he know that?

MARY: That’s what the angel told him.

JOSEPH: Do the elders know?

MARY: Yes, of course. You do believe it, don’t you?

JOSEPH: Oh yes, Mary. Yes. All manner of wondrous things can happen in the temple. I’ve heard others say it. I believe it’s true.

MARY: I know it’s true.

JOSEPH: Well Mary, I’m glad you told me. I guess I’d better be going.

(Joseph starts to leave.)

MARY: Wait, Joseph.

(Joseph stops.)

MARY (cont’d): Before I visited Elisabeth, an angel came to me, too. I was praying, and the room became light—

JOSEPH: Where?

MARY: Here at home.

JOSEPH: You are a blessed person, Mary. I’m not surprised.

MARY: He said the Messiah is coming, through our lineage, just as the scriptures say. And quickly. Very quickly.

JOSEPH: Quickly.

MARY: Now don’t be afraid.

JOSEPH: I’m not afraid, Mary.

MARY: Because He is coming as every child comes. To a family. To a father. Through a woman. (pause) Joseph . . . through me.

JOSEPH : An angel came to you, and told you the Messiah is coming, and that He is coming soon, through you? Through you who are betrothed to me?

MARY: Yes.

Mary tells Joseph about her condition
JOSEPH: And now you’re saying that I will be His father . . .

MARY: You will raise Him.

JOSEPH: Raise Him. What does that mean?

MARY: It means He will be the Son of the Highest. He is the Son of the Highest.


MARY: It’s been three months, Joseph.

JOSEPH: You are three months with child? What are you saying? What are you saying, Mary?

MARY: He’s not just a child, Joseph. He is the Son of God.

(Joseph exits and walks to his half-finished house. Lights come down on Mary.)

[Music cue: “There Are Rules—RepriseMP3, PDF ]

It’s a house, but not what I envisioned.
There’s no door,

[Music cue: Continuation of "There are Rules—Reprise" and segue into “Look on Me This Day—DuetMP3, PDF ]

JOSEPH (cont’d)
no window to be found.
And within, the rooms have been forever rearranged,
And soon I’ll see it topple to the ground.

(Underscore continues.)

JOSEPH (cont’d) (to himself): Mary, you’ve come upon some trouble. But whatever it is—whatever it may be . . . I can’t think of it.

         (Mary appears, kneeling in a pool of light.)

JOSEPH (cont’d): What is the right thing to do? I know the law and the law is clear. If the damsel be not a virgin, they shall bring her out “to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her . . . that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel.”29

JOSEPH (cont’d)
And then what will protect you
And hide you from the storm?
Who will give you shelter
And mend the heart that’s torn?
And who will defend
The child from cunning men
If the children,
Israel’s children,
Come without a friend?

                       [track segues into "Look On Me This Day - Duet"]

My Lord,

My Lord,

My God,

My God,

Came to me that day,

Joseph prays
Come to me this day,

And His mercy

Shed Thy mercy

On me

On me,

Has led me in His way.

And lead me in Thy way.

What I saw,

Let me see,

What I heard,

Help me know,

Fills my heart to say,

And teach me now to hear Thy voice,

I will praise Thy name,
I will praise Thy name,
I will

Praise Thy holy name.
Praise Thy name to all, alway.

(In their separate houses, Mary and Joseph each lie down to sleep. An ANGEL enters Joseph’s home and stands over him.)

An angel appears to Joseph
ANGEL TO JOSEPH: Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of [God]. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.30

(The angel departs. Joseph awakens and runs to Mary.)


MARY: Joseph?

JOSEPH: We must be wed without delay.

MARY: You know!

JOSEPH: Yes. It’s exactly as you said. His name shall be called...

MARY: Jesus.

JOSEPH: ...How did you know?

MARY: That’s what the angel told me.

JOSEPH: And me as well.

MARY: For His mercy is on them that fear Him.

JOSEPH: The house isn’t quite finished. There won’t be time for all the usual preparations. Not everyone will understand.

MARY: With God nothing shall be impossible.

(Immediate segue to wedding scene.)


27. See Luke 1:13.
28. See Luke 1:59–63, 76.
29. Deuteronomy 22:21.
30. See Matthew 1:20–21.

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