Ethan Ruttan was born to take part in the live nativity pageant at the Valley’s Mormon Church on Tzouhalem Road.
For some people, it takes years to cultivate a sense of community involvement and service, but Ruttan performed his fist community service activity at just six weeks old when he portrayed the baby Jesus in the show in 1993.
However, his involvement didn’t cease once he was out of diapers. He has participated in the live Christmas pageant 14 times, portraying various roles such as villager, king’s attendant, llama handler, Angel Gabriel and even Joseph.
The annual event, put on by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is now in it’s 24th year so he’s been a part of it for much of its existence.
Ruttan, now 23 years old, is back again this year, returning from his current home in Victoria, where he is in this third year at UVIC, to reprise his role as the Angel Gabriel in this year’s pageant.
“It’s tradition. It always gets me into the Christmas spirit and seeing all the community come together to celebrate Christ’s birth is heartwarming” he said.
See him and more than 30 other volunteers in action this year in free performances on Dec. 22 and 23 at 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. at the Church at 1815 Tzouhalem Rd.
Free hot chocolate and cookies are provided following the performances.
They’ve also set up a replica stable to stuff with donations of non-perishable items, so bring some with you when you come or drop them off at the church any time on performance days.