An unprecedented living nativity scene in the heart of Rome

Tomorrow in Rome there will be a representation of the Living Nativity Scene, which will stage some of the most beloved scenes of Christmas.

Antonino Piccione-December 16, 2022-Reading time: 2 minutes
Wooden Bethlehem

(Photo: Unsplash / Walter Chávez)

A living nativity scene in the heart of Rome, between the basilicas of San Giovanni in Laterano and Santa Maria Maggiore, following the route of the procession. Corpus Domini. This initiative will be held on Saturday, December 17, 2022, starting at 2:30 p.m., with personalities and delegations from various parts of Italy. The nativity scene will be staged on the esplanade of the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, which houses the relics of the cradle of the baby Jesus and was entitled Santa Maria del Manger.

At the end of the performance, at 5:00 p.m., the Novena will be celebrated in preparation for Christmas. Afterwards, Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, Vicar General of His Holiness for the Diocese of Rome, will preside at the Eucharistic Celebration with the blessing of the children.

"The Nativity Scene", as the Holy Father Francis writes in his Apostolic Letter. Admirabile SignumThe Pope's message, "arouses much amazement and moves us because it manifests the tenderness of God. Monsignor Rolandas Makrickas, Commissary Extraordinary of the Basilica of St. Mary Major, explains: "He, the Creator of the universe, is attentive to our littleness. The gift of life, already mysterious for us, fascinates us even more when we see that the One who was born of Mary is the source and support of all life.

The realization of the Living Nativity Scene, according to a press release from the Papal Basilica of St. Mary Major, was encouraged by Pope Francis, who personally saw the project. The Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore is very dear to the Pope, who has visited it so far, as Pontiff more than 100 times, in addition to many previous visits.

"The development of the Living Crib will begin with the realization of the scene of the approval of the Franciscan Rule by Pope Innocent III in Piazza San Giovanni Paolo II", underlines Fabrizio Mandorlini, coordinator of Città dei CunaThe figures will then move to Via Merulana for the census scene and to represent the moments of life in the city of Bethlehem. "Then the figures will move to Via Merulana for the scene of the census and to represent the moments of life in the city of Bethlehem that they will see in Piazza Santa Maria Maggiore for the installation of the market of trades. Mary and Joseph along the journey will relive the moments of the announcement and the dream and then look for a place to spend the night, but will not find room at the inn. The nativity scene will be under the portico of the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore". 

"The scenes will be carried out by the people who make the Tuscan living nativity scenes of towns such as Pescia, Equi Terme, Casole d'Elsa, Ruota and Legoli with the support of the figures of Badia San Savino, Ghivizzano, San Regolo a Gaiole in Chianti, Santa Colomba, Iolo, Castelfiorentino, Cerreto Guidi, Pontedera, Roffia, La Serra and San Romano. They will be joined by other entities and associations of the faithful who wish to share the experience of the Diocese of Rome". Collaborating in the initiative are Coldiretti Nazionale, the Italian Cattle Breeders Association, the Symbola Foundation, Acli Nazionale and numerous associations, parishes and movements in the city of Rome. The Living Crib will also be held thanks to the collaboration of the Diocese of Rome and the patronage of the Municipality of Rome.

The authorAntonino Piccione

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