Mexican nativity set. People wearing sombreros and carrying food in bowls on their heads and baskets on their backs.

Crèches from Around the World!

Here you will find a growing number of nativity sets – all of them presented to the public in and around Dayton since 1998. They represent only a fraction of the Marian Library's Crèche Collection.

Our trademark is to create a special setting for the sets highlighting their special cultural, symbolic and aesthetic values. It is our goal to make these nativity sets objects of meditation. Thus, each one of the sets presented here comes with a description. These descriptions vary according to country, artist, aesthetic and cultural expressions. For all of them we try to emphasize the appropriate religious message hoping it will lead the visitor to pondering and meditating the mystery of the Incarnation.

The art presented here conveys a variety of interpretations of the Christmas event. Some of the sets are little monuments to artistic creativity and thus a simple statement of beauty. Others will take the visitor to faraway countries and their genius of telling the story of the Incarnation. Most of the scenes speak about human life as much as they speak of religion and God. There are allusions to life's ordinariness and mystery, and attempts to deal visually with suffering and injustice. Sometimes the story crests in a symbol pregnant with meaning, at other times the tale ends with a question mark. In all of these nativity sets the challenge of the Incarnation remains intact.

Tour the World with Our Crèche Collection!