Nativities From Around the World

Merry Christmas everyone!! What a wonderful day this is - a time to reflect on the birth of the Savior, spend time with family and focus on others. No wonder everyone is so happy. Earlier this week Mom, Grandma, Aunt Heidi Steph and I went to Christmas Around the World and it was awesome! There are over 2,000 nativities and 600 nutcrackers from around the world on display. It was so fascinating learning about all of the different traditions associated with Christmas in various countries.

One of the most interesting things I learned in the tour we took is that: "In Italian folklore, Befana is an old woman who delivers gifts to children throughout Italy on Epiphany Eve (the night of January 5) in a similar way to Saint Nicholas or Santa Claus. This Italian gift-giving spirit is also known as Saint Befana, La Vecchia (the Old Woman), and La Strega (the Witch)." - Wikipedia. We were told a story about how she came to be that went something like this - On their way to see baby Jesus the 3 Wise men came across Befana and invited her to come with them, but she was too busy cleaning and did not go. Later she greatly regretted this and has spent every Christmas season since going house-to-house looking for baby Jesus and handing out presents to children along her way.

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