QUESTION: My question is about the Christmas story. I read the Christmas story about the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. When the wise men arrived two years later, they brought the gifts to him in a house. Was this house in the town of Bethlehem or Nazareth. Well, I read Luke and another version of the Bible. It says they returned to Nazareth. Have I opened a can of worms?
ANSWER: Answer Line is no theologian, so I turned to our resident experts at LeTourneau University.
Theology professor Dr. Viktor Roudkovski was kind enough to email some information to help shed light on this. First, he pointed to Matthew 2:7-12, which of course talks about Herod sending the wise men to Bethlehem. Roudkovski said it’s likely that Jesus’ family lived in a house in Bethlehem for one to two years after Christ’s birth. Then, the wise men came. Then Joseph was warned in a dream to escape with his family to Egypt because of Herod’s plans to kill the baby. Then, Herod died and God told Joseph it was safe. That’s when the family would have moved to Nazareth, which fulfilled the prophecy that Jesus was a Nazarene.
Roudkovski also noted that Luke’s account fast-forwards from Bethlehem to Nazareth, without including the story of the Magi that happens between Christ’s birth and the family’s move to Nazareth. It also does not include the family’s escape to Egypt.
Q: I see a car driving around which advertises “Kelli Grant — the Queen of Swing.” One of my friends says she has had hit records in the past and toured the country. Is she a Longview resident, and if so, what is her story? How/when did she get involved in the music business?
A: Your friend is right. Kelli Grant, who was nicknamed “The Queen of Swing” by rhythm and blues great Carl Perkins, has had hit records and received numerous awards and recognitions, and she lives right here in Longview.
We’ve written a lot about her over the years. She is a Kilgore native who graduated from high school there and attended Kilgore College. After she graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University, she married and came to Longview and has called it home since. We’ve previously reported that her mother taught her to play piano. She told me that when she moved to Longview after college, she became the first female musician and singer to work at the Reo Palm Isle.
“They bought me a baby grand piano there and sat me in the middle of the stage,” she said.
She’s had shows in Branson, Missouri, and Las Vegas, for instance, and has toured and played with greats such as Perkins. Grant also owns property here, which helps explain why, in 2016, she decided to open the Kokomo Theatre at 2400 W. Marshall Ave. She said she grew tired of the road and needed to take care of several rental properties she has here in Longview.
Grant performs shows each Friday and Saturday night, along with showing a clean, usually classic, movie, inside the building during winter months and in her outdoor theater when it’s warmer.
Grant noted that the ticket outlet goldstar.com has some complimentary tickets to distribute for her Swingin’ Christmas Shows this weekend and next. For more more information, visit www.kokomotheatre.com .
Q: Does the paper no longer publish health inspections on Wednesday?
A: Please forgive us. We have failed to publish them faithfully as of late. (And by we, I mean me, since I’m the person in charge of the Taste section where those appear each month.) We print them once a month, in our Taste section. Watch for us to publish recent inspections in next week’s paper, and please accept my apologies.