As Christmas rapidly approaches, the Nativity Scene has a part to play in reminding us to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas. It's a reminder of a quote that has been uttered over the years - Jesus is the reason for the season. The Australian Nativity Scene (ANS) has been created by artist Wilson Fernandez at St Elizabeth's Parish, 107 Bakers Rd, Dandenong North, and it's free for all to view. However, you do need to make appointments to view the Nativity Scene display. Viewing times are from 10.30am to 8pm during the week, and from 10am to 5.30pm on Saturdays and 11.30am to 4.30pm on Sundays from 5 Dec 2022 to 13 Jan 2023. Do note that the venue/exhibition is closed on Christmas Day (25 Dec), Boxing Day (26 Dec) and New Year's Day (1 Jan 2023). For appointments, contact Wilson on 0428 927 110 or the Parish office on 9795 6217. Children must be accompanied by an adult/parents/guardian.
Wilson has been creating the crib scenes to capture the wonder and essence of Christmas and the birthplace of baby Jesus for several years. Over the years, the Nativity scene has grown in popularity and draws crowds from all over and all walks of life. The size of the display has also grown over the years, and with attention to detail, it's really worth taking the time to take in all the amazing details. Using a variety of natural materials like soils, stones, clay, straw, plants and barks for the most traditional and authentic impression of being in Bethlehem in the era of Christ, Wilson artistically creates the village and township with handmade huts, stables, buildings, bridges, palaces, houses and temples surrounded with mountains, rocks, lakes and rivers etc. The nativity scene is special because it has a theme each week that tells the Christmas story.
The week 1 display starts with the scene of a normal lifestyle that is artistically created to show the township with villagers, traders, travellers, farmers, animals etc. followed by - 1) the entry of Mary and Joseph in to Bethlehem; 2) no room at the Inn but manage to stay in a stable; 3) birth of Jesus Christ; 4) angel announces good news; 5) shepherds visit the manger; 6) three wise men visit Baby Jesus; and in the last week, 6) the holy family flees to Egypt. Wilson's work is regarded as Australia's largest & best nativity scene by the community, visitors, and parishioners of Melbourne and other Archdioceses, so come along with your family and friends to view the Traditional Nativity Scene at St. Elizabeth's Parish.