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Finding comfort at nativity at the Height

THE spirit of Christmas is set to be brought out onto the streets of Ennis in a very special way this week. On Christmas Eve, a nativity scene crib will be set up at O’Connell Square, highlighting the spiritual meaning of the holiday season to passersby on one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
This is the second year that the crib has been installed at the prominent Ennis location. The crib will be in place from 2pm to 4.30pm on Thursday. As well as the nativity scene, there will be festive music from the Wylde Roses choir and the Clarecastle Youth Choir, and some mince pies on the day.
Ennis priest Fr Ger Fitzgerald who is behind the endeavour explained, “The whole idea behind the crib is to show people another side of the church, in that the church is not just four walls. It is a part of life, the church wants to identify with people’s lives.”
He added that Pope Francis’ message is to take religion onto the streets and to be with the people. And he expressed the hope that the crib will help bring some comfort to people in need at Christmas.
“Jesus was born in a stable, and his birth was not announced to the rulers of the day or the presidents. It was announced to the poor. If you look around the world, if you look around Ennis, there are many types of people who are poor. Not just monetarily, but also people who are lonely, heart broken, looking for meaning in their lives.
“The crib at the Height is there to show people that the church wants to reach out to these people, the people who are most in need. The people who need a listening ear most of all. We are coming into the Year of Mercy, where the idea is to show a more gentle, humble church. And what more meaningful and gentle way is there than having the baby Jesus at the Height?”
The crib was created by members of the Ennis Men’s Shed, with Fr Fitzgerald expressing his gratitude for the work that has gone into it.
“I am hoping that people will come along and see the crib, and hopefully they will really get into the Christmas spirit,” he concluded.

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