The Christmas Story

Photographer: Stephen Ruttan
Photographer: Stephen Ruttan

A Beloved Holiday Tradition

The Christmas Story at the Church of the Holy Trinity is one of Toronto’s oldest and best-loved Christmas traditions. The story of the Nativity is told through a series of narrated scenes linked by beautiful organ music and carols from an unseen choir.  Close to 100 volunteers, including babies who take turns playing the role of baby Jesus, perform in one of two casts.  The Church of the Holy Trinity, a 167-year-old architectural treasure, brings its own charm to the presentation.

First staged here in 1938, this classic pageant first began in St. Martin-in-the-Fields church in London England in 1928.  The Rev. Pat McCormick and two parishioners crafted a script from Biblical passages and then added organ music and some of the loveliest English Christmas carols.  The Christmas Story played for 10 years in England, but had to stop during the Second World War as a result of the blackouts.  During that run Queen Elizabeth and her sister Margaret, who were then little girls, were among the audience members.

Patricia, the daughter of Rev. Pat McCormick fell in love with a young curate, John Frank, who came to work with her father.  When John and Patricia married and he was assigned to the Church of the Holy Trinity in Toronto, Patricia decided to bring the Christmas Story with her.  After returning to England many years later, Patricia stayed in touch with Holy Trinity and the Christmas Story cast until her death in 2014.

What People Are Saying About The Christmas Story

Some audience members have been attending the Christmas Story every year for more than 60 years!  Here’s what some of them say:


Performance Schedule & Details

Performances of The Christmas Story take place over three weekends, December 5-7, 12-14 & 19-21. Each presentation lasts just over 1 hour.  Saturday and Sunday matinees are offered at 4:30 pm and evening performances on varying nights at 7:30 pm.  The Christmas Story is funded by donations from audience members and gifts from generous supporters.  The suggested contribution is $20 for adults and $5 for children.

Reservations are recommended, especially for the dates closest to Christmas.  Reservations can be made on-line at

The church is fully wheelchair accessible and sign language interpretation is offered at select performances.

Photographer: Stephen Ruttan

Reviews from 2013 are available at the following links:

The Charlebois Post

Critics at Large



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