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About Us

We are the only nationally-based creche/nativity society in the United States.

"Creche" and "nativity set" are both terms for a Christmas display representing the birth of Jesus Christ.

Our organization is dedicated to these core principles:

  • To learn more about the nativity tradition: how it developed, and how it is expressed in our own and other cultures.

  • To make better known the tradition of the nativity.

  • To serve as a source of information about nativities.

  • To encourage artists to create nativities.

  • To promote nativity exhibits.

  • To establish relationships with creche and nativity associations in other countries.

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Our Story

In December, 1999, a group of people met in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to discuss creating a society for people with a love of the Christmas nativity.  Such organizations existed in other countries, but not in the United States.  In 2001, Friends of the Creche was formally created as a registered 501(c)(3) registered nonprofit in Pennsylvania. The first convention was held in 2001 in Lancaster, PA.  Rita Bocher had begun Creche Herald, a magazine for nativity enthusiasts, a few years before.  Friends of the Creche was given a page in her magazine to publish information about the new organization.  

Since then, we have been meeting annually to share our common love of the art of the Creche.  Learning, growing, and keeping the traditions and history of the Nativity, Belen, Nacimento, Krippen, through its various forms and cultures, has been our sincere pleasure.  

Our Leadership Team


Michele Devitt


Carol Williams.jpg

Carol Williams



Tony Conway


Helen Holder.jpg

Helen Holder


Mike Whalen.jpg

Michael Whalen

Editor, Creche Herald

Neil Allen

Neil Allen



Cathy Lincoln

Chair for 2025 Cleveland Convention

Non Profit Status


Friends of the Creche is a non-profit, non-political, and non-sectarian organization. The purpose of the organization is to promote the tradition of the crèche. It was incorporated in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. FOTC is a 501(C)3 Federal Tax-exempt organization. Also, from 2 January 2001 and in April 2006, the Internal Revenue Service classified Friends of the Creche as a Section 509- (A) -2 Public Charity.  The official registration and financial information of FOTC may be obtained from the Pennsylvania Department of State. Pennsylvania residents may call toll free: 800-732-0999. Registration does not imply endorsement. Information may also be obtained on the internet from Guidestar at

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