Away in a Manger

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Throughout Sicily, building and viewing presepe, or the nativity scene, is a Christmas tradition. From table top diorama-sized statues, like this one pictured from Chiesa di San Bartolomeo in Scicli, to performances featuring actors and live animals that can be found in towns like Sutera, Gangi, and Termini Imerese, to name just a few, displaying the Holy Family in the manger tells the story of Christmas. Until December 25, the baby Jesus’ straw crib (presepio, in Italian) is empty. The scene is completed with an infant once Jesus is born on Christmas Day.

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