Tuesday December 23, 2008

Billboard Greetings

A billboard featuring seven creches from around the world from the Marian Library collection will convey Christmas greetings to the Cincinnati region from an anonymous donor.

An anonymous donor is giving a one-day outdoor Christmas card to the Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky area wishing the region "Peace on Earth, goodwill to men" through Nativity scenes from around the world.

At midnight on Christmas Eve, the billboard on Interstate 471 southbound in Kentucky near Newport, the electronic billboard rotation will include images of Nativity scenes from the University of Dayton's Marian Library, home to one of the largest collections of the scenes in the U.S.

Images of seven handcrafted Nativity scenes will rotate with the message "Around the world the message is the same…Peace on Earth, goodwill to men." The Nativities, which are from Poland, New Mexico, Taiwan, France, Ecuador, Austria and Germany, will appear about once every minute.

The donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, said she wanted to send a special greeting to the community and arranged for the display from Christmas Eve through the early hours of Dec. 26.

"I think we need more Christmas at Christmas," she said. "The whole point of doing it anonymously is to give with no thought of gain."

UD's Marian Library holds the world's largest collection of printed materials on Mary, the mother of Jesus, as well as more than 1,600 Nativity scenes, also called cr?ches. The library's collection focuses on cr?ches from different countries that portray the Nativity through the culture of those countries.

For more on the Nativity scenes and the Marian Library, visit http://www.udayton.edu/mary or call 937-229-4214.

For more information, contact Cilla Shindell, executive director of news and communications, at 937-229-3257 or shindell@udayton.edu.