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Rome Reports

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International Nativity Scene exhibit in Vatican again

By now a tradition, the “100 Nativity Scenes in the Vatican” exhibit opened its doors to show the world's great creativity in representing the Nativity of Baby Jesus.

“100 Presepi”

“Each region, each country has a culture, distinct traditions, its folklore. This is also reflected in the Nativity Scene. It's very interesting from a cultural perspective. We as Christians have to strive to divulge this love for the Nativity Scene.”

This year there are about 130 representations from 30 countries. Among them is this one made from food packages. There is also this one made of wood. This other one with plastic cylinders is made from recycled materials, including children's drawings.

There is also this piece which requires leaning in closely to see the Nativity Scene through the archway. Others are more traditional, like this one inspired by Naples. Inside, there is even a representation of St. Gennaro.

This year, the exhibition has an even greater significance because of the publication of “Admirabile signum,” an apostolic letter in which Pope Francis explains the meaning of this tradition started by St. Francis of Assisi and which carries a message to the world.

“100 Presepi”

“The hope is that on Christmas, the manger will be present in all houses, offices, prisons, businesses, plazas, but above all in the schools. I think it's necessary to teach children to love the Nativity Scene. It's very important because children follow their parents' example.”

This impressive exhibition invites people to stop and admire the mystery represented by the manger. It is proof that Baby Jesus reaches every corner of the world.

The “100 Nativity Scenes in the Vatican” exhibit can be visited until Jan. 12, 2020 in Pius X Hall.