This musical play is a love story. The central character is a minister, David, who is deeply in love with his wife, Jenny, who has pancreatic cancer. In the first act the choir is preparing for Christmas services. All of the characters except one are members of the church’s choir, which David leads.
As David struggles to move beyond anger and denial regarding Jenny’s medical condition, he gives support to his brother Sean, a Marine heading back to Iraq who is engaged to marry an Iraqi Muslim woman; to an African American lawyer, Harriet, whose brother has encountered police harassment; to a gay university student, Andrew, who has just come out to an abusive father; and to his mother, Sara, whose husband, David’s father, has recently died. At the end of Act I, Jenny’s medical condition, which appeared to be showing signs of improvement, takes a sudden turn for the worse.
In Act II, Jenny continues her health battle; Sean marries his love; Harriet and David negotiate with the local police commission to establish a mechanism for dialogue between the police and the minority community; and Andrew and his mother move out of the family home and obtain a restraining order against his father with the assistance of Harriet.
In a later scene, Jenny tells David that her medical condition has become dire and there is no longer any hope that she will recover. David wants her to keep fighting, but Jenny asks, instead, that they spend their remaining time together in a peaceful transition. During this period, David briefly falters in his faith and expresses the depth of his pain in song. Jenny dies and, in David’s mind’s eye, she is resurrected in the final scene.