Providing viewers with a touching holiday treat, the popular British television series CALL THE MIDWIFE offers a special 75-minute Christmas episode, airing December 30th on PBS. Bookended with the warm narration of Vanessa Redgrave, this holiday episode invites viewers to revisit the world of Nurse Jenny Lee (Jessica Raine) at the Nonnatus House convent with its heart-warming message to share about the strength of the human spirit and love we all have to share with one another even during the most harsh and extreme times of our lives.
Yet peering behind the curtain to glimpse the beating heart of humanity requires a great deal of strength and fortitude as life was incredibly harsh in the 1950’s and the times before that in how women survived on their own. Something as natural as childbirth could be a difficult ordeal without today’s modern medicines and creature comforts; and the opening scene may be hard to watch with that stark reminder. Also because the show features the daily travails of those who chose to be midwifes, it is only to be expected that there is also a second birthing scene which will also make more sensitive viewers flinch at its honesty about a young woman seeking to hide her pregnancy and deliver on her own.
Despite its tough and realistic portrayals, there is a lot of warmth and fun to be had watching this holiday special episode as Nurse Lee befriends an elderly woman who seems to have been forgotten in the passing of time. She not only brings the physical care needed for her to rebound, but the emotional support for the woman so that she can grieve for all she has lost and find new reasons to embrace life once again. There is also the promise of a family reunion as an abandoned child’s identity is sought. For what would be Christmas without a baby looking to bring a little joy and love into all their lives?
This episode of CALL THE MIDWIFE reminds us that hope can be brought to the seemingly hopeless. For love and fear may be the greatest motivators in times of great stress, but only by conquering fear and encouraging love to flourish. It is then that the spirit of Christmas will thrive. There is a powerful message shared in this episode that “Faith cannot be questioned, only lived — and we could feel its heartbeat, which is love.”
In the end, love conquers all and joy is restored into lives of those who had been living in fear and darkness. It is a wonderful portrayal that will lighten and infuse many hearts. The CALL THE MIDWIFE holiday special is scheduled to air Sunday, December 30th at 9PM on PBS.