A few years before his death and in remembrance of his visit to the Holy Land, our Seraphic Father Francis asked his friend and companion, Giovanni Velita – the Lord of Greccio, to recreated the presepio (crèche) in the cavity of a cave. At Christmas in 1223, in the town of Greccio, Francis desired to reenact for the first time, the scene at Bethlehem. In it was placed a manger with hay and a live ox and donkey. The Cappella del Presepio or “Nativity Chapel” was built there in 1228; the year of the canonization of St. Francis of Assisi. (Read More)
We now enjoy the tradition of manger scenes in our churches and in our homes because of this event – Christ coming to live among us. Throughout the years, our friars have continued this tradition with Living Nativity celebrations we simply call “Greccio.” The pandemic of 2020 has forced these celebration to change a bit but our friars and our ministries are trying diligently to still keep the tradition alive with safe social distancing protocols in place.
Be sure to check out our “Locations” page for a ministry nearest to you to see if they are going to hold a Greccio Experience.