Close to 100 people safely attended the Franciscan Center’s annual “Blessing of the Creche” on Friday, December 11th at 7:00 pm on the Center grounds at 3010 North Perry Avenue, Tampa. We enjoyed cookies, cider, and caroling, and guests brought their nativity scene figurines and had them blessed by the Franciscan Friars of Sacred Heart Parish in Tampa.

St, Francis has a very special connection with the nativity and Pope Francis signed a letter last year that called for Nativity scenes to be more widely displayed in family homes and public places. In Assisi, they recreate the Nativity each year on a grand scale with over 50 figures of shepherds, angels, and animals.

When we learned this week that Assisi’s Nativity included a life-size nurse to honor first responders, we wanted to do the same so you will see them in our Creche.  We passed the dolls along to our neighbors at The Sister’s House as a donation to the collection of gifts for mothers and children at the Foundations of Life Pregnancy Center and the Dawning House.

Thank you to all who joined us and a special thanks to the Franciscan Sisters who attended and the new Friars from Sacred Heart who performed our blessings and to Sean Fitzsimmons-Brown for the lovely caroling. And also to Sea Maids Creamery and Housewife Bake Shop for the delicious cookies and to Fresco Y Mas for the hot cider!

You can watch the Blessing of the Creche 2020 at Franciscan Center here on Facebook below and yes – we do fix the video as the program begins! Merry Christmas!