Live Crib Opened in Dublin

The Crib reminds us of the simplicity of the Christmas message and it represents a small piece of the countryside in the heart of Dublin’s vibrant bustling streets. I hope that all that visit this lifelike creation of the Nativity Crib enjoy the tranquil setting and the festive spirit,” said the Lord Mayor of Dublin Naoise O’Muiri at the opening for the Live Animal Crib at the Mansion House in Dublin on Monday.

The ‘Little Angels’ from St. Josephs Nursery, Morning Star Road, and the Lucan Gospel Choir entertained everybody with their angelic singing of festive carols and gospel renditions. The Lord Mayor also thanked the Irish Farmers’ Association for their gift of the animals and their continuous care throughout their stay at the Live Animal Crib. A farmer from County Dublin cares for the animals and takes them to the safety and warmth of a farm barn at night and returns them every morning to the city crib.

IFA President John Bryan said, “The Live Animal Crib at the Mansion House in Dublin is now firmly established as part of Christmas in the heart of our capital city. For almost 20 years, it has provided a traditional nativity scene which families can enjoy as part of their visit to Dublin.”

The Live Animal Crib has been a joint venture between Dublin City Council and the Irish Farmers’ Association since 1995. The Crib is a specially constructed, life-size stable containing a sheep, donkey and goat. It is based on a similar crib, which has been a feature of Christmas in the Grande Place, in Brussels for many years. This year that European city’s Winter Wonders has gone high tech with an electronic 'Xmas 3', but the crib remains the same as ever. It includes live sheep, has a straw roof and is lit 24 hours a day. The 'Xmas 3' is 24 metres high and made of steel, covered with wood and a screen. For 4 euros, visitors can climb the installation during the day (from 11 am to 4 pm) to enjoy a panoramic view of the Grand-Place and the Unesco zone. The proceeds of these visits will go to Samu Social, an organization which helps homeless.

In Dublin the Crib is open to the public until Christmas Eve from 11am to 6pm daily (Christmas Eve 11am to 2pm). Admission is free, but any voluntary contributions from the public will go towards the Mansion House Fuel Fund, of which the Dublin Simon Community and the Vincent De Paul are the two main beneficiaries.

The Mansion House Fuel Fund was set up by Sir John Arnott in 1891 to assist the needy during a particularly hard winter. At the end of that winter the surplus was carried over to the next year and the Mansion House Fuel Fund has continued to aid the needy in Dublin since. It is one of the oldest charities in Dublin and is one of the earlier interdenominational charities in Ireland. The Mansion House Fuel Fund is the Lord Mayor’s only personal charity. Funds are raised through visitor donations at the Crib, an annual postage appeal and the Lord Mayor’s Annual Christmas Concert.

© CatholicIreland.net 2002-2012

 

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