A unique Christmas holiday event – A live nativity in East Haddam

Angels on high… at the annual Live Nativity offered to the community for the 10th year by Christ Community Church in East Haddam on Dec. 7-8, 2012. Contributed photo.

Editor’s note: This event has been postponed to Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 14 and 15 because of rain.

Despite rising costs of such things as camel rentals, and the incredible amount of time and work required of volunteers, Christ Community Church in East Haddam is offering – for the 10th year! – a Live Nativity, for one weekend only.

“Come and Behold Him” is an intimate reenactment of the traditional Christmas story, presented from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 7 and Saturday, Dec. 8 on the church grounds at 50 Orchard Road.

“Come and Behold Him” is an intimate reenactment of the traditional Christmas story, presented from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 7 and Saturday, Dec. 8 only, on the grounds of Christ Community Church at 50 Orchard Road, East Haddam, CT. Contributed photo.

Visitors drive through the reenactment, through scenes from Bethlehem with actors in elaborate costumes, music and a myriad of animals (including a live camel).

“We try to bring the real meaning of Christmas to life,” said Pastor Victoria Triano. “In the midst of this very quiet and cold night, something miraculous happens.”

Your journey begins by entering through huge gates into a field within the city walls of Bethlehem. You see the shepherds as they fearfully encounter the heavenly angels proclaiming the birth of the Christ child and are encouraged to “Come and Behold Him.”

They then find themselves joining with the Wise Men as they follow the star to the manger.

Finally, they see the manger scene come to life.  Mary, Joseph and Jesus are surrounded by curious townspeople, an angel and of course, animals.

More than 40 adults and children make up the cast of the live nativity presented by Christ Community Church in East Haddam, CT. Contributed photo.

More than 40 adults and children make up the cast for the presentation.

Special lighting and other effects add to the drama of the experience.

“This is not your average Christmas pageant,” Pastor Triano said, “It is something to be experienced … It is really the reason for the season.  It is our Christmas card to the community.”

For more information, you may call the church during church office hours at (860) 873-1187.

Editor’s note: Don’t miss the event this year – rumor has it, this tradition may be coming to an end.          

Posted December 4, 2012

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