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Mesa family helps 'Jesus the Christ' Easter pageant by providing sheep

Published: Wednesday, March 28 2012 5:00 a.m. MDT

MESA, Ariz. — A lot goes on behind the scenes to pull together the Mesa Arizona Easter Pageant titled "Jesus the Christ" each year, but overlooking the ewes and lambs may leave you feeling sheepish.

An article by the East Valley Tribune tells how the pageant obtains its supporting sheep.

"Mesa’s Lee Pace, his wife, Carol, and their eight children have donated their time and sheep to the pageant for more than 12 years," the East Valley Tribune reported.

Pageant coordinators used to have to search each year for all-white lambs, the article said, until the Paces started acquiring the lambs at the end of the pageant. The family now has its own flock, and at least one lamb is born in time to be in the pageant each year.

"But it doesn't always occur like clockwork," the article reported. "The first spring the Paces tried breeding lambs for the pageant, they found themselves with pregnant ewes but no lambs. Despite their best efforts in scouring the state, none could be found. On the first day of dress rehearsal, Carol fell to her knees, desperately praying for a miracle — but she inevitably conceded to reality. She dialed the pageant director to discuss the bad news. While on the phone, she glanced out a window looking into her backyard, and there stood not one, but two newborn all-white lambs."

The pageant begins Wednesday, March 28, and runs through April 7 and is performed in English and Spanish. More information on the pageant, including a schedule, is available at www.easterpageant.org.

Email: rbrutsch@desnews.com

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