A Christmas “fable” by the author of A Stranger for Christmas (not reviewed) and Morning Glory Mother (1997). Annabelle Perkins, a spinster of 57 who waits tables, has a little bronze lamb she wants to take to Bethlehem as a gift for baby Jesus. Her mother had always told her that they would take it together. But now her parents are dead. Annabelle deposits $200 on a $2,000 Christmas trip to the Holy Land. She doesn’t earn much and has a bad heart as well, but she puts in an extra day a week at the restaurant and by November is ready for the trip. Then, however, she learns that the daughter of one of her regular customers is going to drop out of college’she’s run out of money. Baby Jesus whispers to Annabelle, —Give me my gift now.— So Annabelle anonymously sends her savings in a postal money order to the girl. Next year, Annabelle again saves up for the trip, but this time she reads that an ex-boyfriend has a daughter who needs a kidney transplant (price: $50,000). Baby Jesus whispers again. And Annabelle sends the money to the ex, anonymously. Next year, the same kind of giveaway occurs. Now she’s too weak to work overtime (and thus save for the fare). But, lo, a miracle takes place. . . . You have to like baby Jesus an awful lot to dig this story. But, after all, Christmas is His birthday.