Mantua – According to Wikipedia, Saint Francis of Assisi is credited with creating the first live nativity scene in 1223. The scene’s popularity inspired communities throughout Catholic countries to stage similar events throughout the ages. For the first time ever, the Women’s Auxiliary of the Mantua Knights of Columbus #3766 will present a live nativity on the grounds of Saint Joseph Church in Mantua. The event will take place this weekend, Friday, December 16th through Sunday, December 18th from 6 to 8 pm each evening.

“We wanted to host an event that would help our parish kids connect with the community,” shared Linda Litz, one of the event’s organizers. “We’ve never done a living nativity before, but are thrilled to be able to bring this experience to St. Joseph’s for the community to experience this holiday season,” she beamed.

If you’ve never seen a living nativity, the scene at St. Joseph’s will feature people representing Mary, Joseph, shepherds and the three wise men. Participants include local scout troops, 4H members, parish school of religion (PSR) students, and St. Joe’s parish members showcasing this real-life Christmas drama. Due to the cold weather, a doll will represent the infant Jesus. The event will also feature an assortment of live animals, including cows, sheep, a donkey, and a miniature horse to round out the stable scene.

In lieu of an admission charge, non-perishable food items will be accepted on behalf of the 4Cs food cupboard. Free will donations will also be accepted, with proceeds from the event helping to fund much-needed repairs to St. Joseph’s church.

Families are welcome to view the scene from the warmth of their cars as they driving through the holiday display. Or instead, plan to dress for the weather and join the joyful noise of the choir as they celebrate the reason for the season. The holiday event will also feature hot cocoa and warming stations.