• Neil Allen

My Nativity Story: Neil Allen (Webmaster)

Usually when you start a story about collecting nativities one starts at the beginning. However, Covid-19 has caused us all to start with today. Sadly, the present day shows yet another surge of the deadly virus spreading across the world with impunity. It will likely cause us all to re-think our displays.

Last year all our nativities. normally traveling to churches and organizations, stayed in their boxes in the storage space, and I went to an on-line event open to anyone and everyone. I did showings with as few as 2 people and as many as 50. That is nothing like the events of past years when we exceeded 1,500 visitors in a four day stretch, and one year we hit that number in 6 hours!

While I miss the old days, I've come to value the present moment all the more. People reach out to me rather than the other way around. They are hungry for the nativity and eager to know more.

Pastors desperate for engaging content they could show on-line contacted me for pictures of nativities. I gladly obliged and enjoyed speaking to them about their questions and concerns.

Some, like me, wanted to show the diversity of God. Others wanted me to talk about Mary, or Joseph. Some wanted to know why I collect (I've document that here so I won't bore you). Still others wanted only a picture or two.

The Creche Herald published seven events but under the title said, "Call first for all events as there may be changes with the ongoing pandemic."

What will the season bring? No one really knows.

I interviewed a person that has been doing a live "Walk to Bethlehem" for about 30 years. She lamented the idea lingering on the fringes of our heart that we might pass another season without touching people's hearts with this amazing story. But it's just the beginning of September and she said, "Never say never."

My own heart prayed a thankful prayer for her attitude.

Your thoughts on this subject are probably in flux like all of ours, and we would love to hear from you. As a friend concluded "There is great value in this adventure we call the nativity. Let us continue to tell the story as best as we are able with what ever tools we have at God's disposal."

Peace, Love and Hope.

Neil Allen (Webmaster - Friends of the Creche)

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