Nativities from Around the World features hundreds of unique displays at new location

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KBSI) – Sometimes you don’t realize what you have until it’s gone, and such was the case for the Nativities from Around the World display. 

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Cape Girardeau had to cancel the display each of the last two years, in 2020 because of COVID and last year because of a fire at the church’s prior location. 

“It took us awhile to pull back up, but now we have this temporary location, and it’s a great spot to have them, so we brought all of our old friends back out and enjoyed seeing all of our old nativity friends again,” event chairperson Claudia Mueller said.

The display featured over 600 unique nativities from countries far and wide, each with a unique story and aesthetic. 

This year’s event and the seven others before it would not have been possible without Jon Baker, whose collection kickstarted the tradition. 

“We have over 500 in our collection, and each one has a story,” he said. “It’s fun to look at them and think back to the times when we got them and the stories that they represent.” 

Each nativity may look different, but both Baker and Mueller said they all share the same message. 

“All of these nativities have one theme: the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, and that’s what we’re here to celebrate,” Baker said.

“When you get all these together, and that underlying theme of the whole world with the same Biblical story and the same love for it, and then they add their dimension of their culture and of their love and of their art forms, it just brings on a special feeling, and with this building and intimate setting that we have, it’s just extra special,” Mueller said.

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