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Pandemic Religion: A Digital Archive

Collected Item: “The Animals' Christmas: A Drive-Through Live Nativity”


The Animals' Christmas: A Drive-Through Live Nativity

Narrative or description

On December 23, 2020, St. Anne's Episcopal Church in Reston, Virginia, presented The Animals' Christmas: A Drive-Through Live Nativity experience. From the warmth of one's vehicle, attendees heard the Christmas story told by the youth of the congregation and saw animals we expect to find at the manger. Through scripture, poetry and song - and with the help of a goat, a sheep, an ox, a donkey, and a camel - the youth provided narrated scenes surrounding the birth of Jesus. We had more than 500 attendees in a three-hour window. We learned that in the midst of the pandemic, people were hungry for a Christmas experience - an experience of pageantry and wonder, an experience of joy and hope - that connected with people of all ages. For Christians, Christmas is not only an essential 12-day season celebrating the birth of Jesus, it is an essential part of the Christian story and journey we must experience again and again, every year, as we grow and become more like the one whose birth we celebrate. So, finding a way to safely include so many from our community in the organization and production of such an event, and creating something safe, enjoyable, and meaningful for those who attended, was so important for us to do.




St. Anne's Episcopal Church

Denomination or tradition

The Episcopal Church

State or territory




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