Remember when Peanuts’ Linus took the stage in the classic holiday special, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and explained “what Christmas is all about” to Charlie Brown? His monologue described the Nativity; the very first Christmas according to Christian tradition.
On December 12 and 13, you’re invited to “Step Into Christmas” to experience the Nativity with a tour of “Bethlehem” as Linus described in the words of Luke 2 of the Christian holy book, The Bible. Here’s a sample of what you’ll experience on the tour:
• See haggling merchants and their wares in the market place • Chat with the Innkeeper, but don’t expect to get a room – it’s super busy in Bethlehem tonight! • Meet the shepherds, pet their woolly sheep and donkeys, and hear about their amazing encounter with angels. • Experience the wonder and simplicity of the stable - first-hand!
Volunteers have been working since August to bring the Nativity to life: hand-sewing costumes for the 41 actors; gathering props; and constructing the town site. This has all been accomplished through donations and the personal investment of members of Redeemer Alliance Church, who will also be performing as part of “Step Into Christmas”.
Why this labour of love?
Says Coordinator Heather Lamarre, “We want the community to not just have a concept of the first Christmas, but to truly experience the gift that it was to us all”.
And “Step Into Christmas” is, indeed, a gift: the 30-minute open air tours are FREE, as are the hot chocolate and sweet treats that will be offered afterwards inside the cozy warmth of the church building. Pay it forward by bringing a donation for the Ottawa Food Bank.
You’ll find “Bethlehem” at Redeemer Alliance Church at 4825 Innes Road from 6:30-8:30pm on Friday and Saturday, December 12 and 13. Thirty-minute tours start every 15 minutes.
Celebrating the Nativity is a tradition observed by Christians during the holiday season. What traditions do you celebrate?