Interfaith Nativity is Dec. 15

Interfaith Nativity is Dec. 15Pictured: A visitor to a previous Living Nativity enters into the reverent re-enactment of the very first Christmas. — Photo by Laura Austin

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The Ridgecrest Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will host “Come, Let Us Adore Him,” an interfaith nativity display, on Friday, Dec. 15, from 6-9 p.m. at 501 N. Norma St.

“The community is invited to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ through a large display of items depicting the nativity scene, while listening to sacred Christmas music,” said a spokesperson. Also part of the event is the stake’s annual live nativity, which will be held inside from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Admission is free.

“This year we really wanted to make sure that people from a variety of faiths could participate,” said Kristin Hawkins, event chair. “My hope is that [the event will] bring people in our community together as we celebrate a common belief that Christian people share—that Jesus Christ was born into the world.

“There’s a lot of divisiveness in our world today, and I think some of that is caused by people focusing on what makes us different from each other. We have a wonderful religious community here in Ridgecrest.

“This is a great opportunity to look past our differences and find the common ground we stand on. Our community will be strengthened as we serve together and support each other in all the good that we’re trying to do.”

When coming up with a name for the evening, Hawkins immediately thought of the chorus lyrics from “Oh, Come, All Ye Faithful.” As the planning continued, “Interfaith Nativity Night” was chosen as the subtitle.

“It’s perfect!” said Ronelle Cannon, committee member. “The abbreviation for Interfaith Nativity Night is INN! There’s always room at the INN!”

“The main objective of the activity is to strengthen faith in Christ within our community,” said President Mark Anderson, second counselor in the Ridgecrest Stake Presidency. “We want to help participants have a spiritual experience celebrating the most important element of Christmas, Christ’s birth.

“We hope to draw the interest of many people in a variety of meaningful ways. We’re doing something different than we have in the past with that hope. Holding the event at this building makes it more centrally located with the possibility of increased participation.”

Hawkins said she hopes that having live music will help create a reverent atmosphere while participants, who may come and go at their leisure, enjoy the display of nativities. “It will allow more people to participate and share their particular talents.”

At the end of the displays, visitors will be invited to partake of homebaked cookies.

“Bring children, bring friends and enjoy this special night with your neighbors!” invited Hawkins.

Story First Published: 2017-12-01