Neumann will capture the Christmas spirit with its annual live nativity re-enactment on Wednesday, December 6, at 6:15 p.m. on the lawn of the Mirenda Center.
This year marks the 800th anniversary of Christians celebrating the birth of Christ by staging a public performance of the Christmas story.
St. Francis of Assisi created the first live nativity scene in Greccio, Italy, in 1223. Now a traditional element of Christmas festivities around the world, the ritual has been celebrated ever since.
The program is free and open to the public.
Neumann students will re-enact the Franciscan tradition of the crib, performing the live nativity scene, complete with live manger animals. President Chris Domes, First Lady Mary Domes, and Vice President Sr. Kathy Dougherty will host the event and read the scripture narration.
NU Praise and a children’s choir from St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Springfield will perform Christmas hymns during the live nativity.
From 5:30 to 7:15 p.m., a petting zoo of manger animals will be on site to entertain youngsters at the event. In addition to the Greccio celebration, the university also invites everyone to celebrate Mass at 4:30 p.m. in Sacred Heart Chapel.
After the re-enactment, all are welcome to meet Santa and enjoy refreshments in the Bayada Atrium of the Mirenda Center.
The Neumann University Concert Chorale will also capture the spirit of the season on Friday, December 1, by performing vocal musical selections, including traditional and contemporary holiday favorites. Entitled “The Spirit of Christmas,” the concert starts at 8 p.m. in the university’s Meagher Theatre.
The Neumann University Jazz Band will include a few Christmas numbers, too, in its 7 p.m. concert on November 30, also in the Meagher Theatre.
Admission to the chorale and jazz band performances is free for Neumann faculty, staff, students, and children under 12.
For a complete schedule of cultural events on campus, visit www.neumann.edu/arts.