2013-12-24 18:53:35

Nativity scene unveiled

(Vatican Radio) Thousands of people gathered in front of Saint Peter’s Basilica on Christmas Eve for the unveiling of the Nativity Scene.

Entitled “Francis 1223 – Francis 2013”, traditional display recalls the world’s first nativity scene set up 790 years ago by Italy’s popular patron St. Francis of Assisi, whose name and humble lifestyle Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio assumed on being elected Pope.

This year’s Nativity Scene was crafted by artisans from the southern Italian city of Naples, which is famous for its Christmas displays.

In addition to the traditional figures of the Holy Family and the shepherds, with the Magi approaching from a distance, the scene features figures representing the poorest members of society. They include a mother bringing her son to see the Christ Child, and a beggar, poorly dressed and dirty, sitting at Jesus’ feet.

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