Stop the presses! at Eagle Heights Church make headlines in the “Morning Star” with their Christmas Pageant “The Mystery of the Manger, It’s the Gospel Truth! “

The small congregation of Eagle Heights may only number in the 40’s, but it has room to grow and opens its doors to everyone.

Sunday, they offered their first production. Not as many rehearsals were involved due to interference of two hurricanes, but that didn’t seem to affect the Pre-Kindergarten through sixth grade performers. They sang and danced their little hearts out in a play about the dress rehearsal of a Christmas pageant being observed by investigative reporter, “Blonde…Jane Blonde,” played by sixth grade Orangefield student, Bethany Vermillion.

The irony of sitting in the hall watching the dress rehearsal was not lost.

Blonde was looking for “the facts…just the facts,” that proved Jesus was the son of God. The children and young actors showed her all the proof she needed with upbeat songs and cute choreography.

Created by Celeste Clydesdale and arranged by David T. Clydesdale, it uses none of the traditional Christmas Carols and is told in a refreshing new way.

Students were drafted for the musical from all area schools with about 26 children participating coming from Orangefield, Bridge City, Little Cypress-Mauriceville and Community Christen Schools.

The Orangefield School District transported their students by bus to the church on rehearsal days after school.

It was a great opportunity for the children. 

Jeana Vermillion, director of hopes the program will continue to grow and flourish.

They will begin rehearsals for their next production, “King of the Jungle,” Feb. 5. The tentative date for that performance is May 10.

You can contact the church for more information.

Eagle Heights is an interfaith church that began 12 years ago by Pastor Don V. Richey, Jr. and his wife Shirley. Son-in-law, Bob Vermillion is also Pastor.

The church started meeting at television station channel 34 on Interstate 10, then moved to the wedding chapel on Highway 62, until building the sanctuary in its present location at 11815 IH 10, Orange.

The congregation had grown to 150, but soon after it was completed, Hurricane Rita came through tearing the roof off and damaging most of the building. During the time of rebuilding, most of the congregation went elsewhere.

“There were banners all around the room, and they were all gone except that one,” said Shirley Richey, pointing to a single banner that says Jesus hanging from the ceiling in the middle of the stage.

“…and our prayer room was untouched,” she said. “God knew what he was doing…because of Rita, the building is paid for. We are debt free.”

They welcome anyone to their church services at 10 a.m. on Sundays. It is a very nice facility. Children’s church and a nursery are provided.

They also invite anyone to share in their family-style meal on Wednesdays between 5:30 – 6:30 p.m., with Bible study for all ages afterward.

For more information you can call the church at 409-745-0050, contact Pastor Richey at, or Pastor Vermillion at

About Penny LeLeux

Penny has worked at The Record Newspapers since 2006. A member of the editorial staff, she has "done everything but print it." Most frequently she writes entertainment reviews and human interest stories, with a little paranormal thrown in from time to time.She has been a lifelong member of the Orangefield community.