Wednesday January 11, 2012

Closing Soon

The Marian Library's annual exhibit of Nativity sets from around the world will be packed up after Jan. 29 until next November.

"At the Manger — World Nativity Traditions," the annual Christmas season display of manger scenes from around the world at the University of Dayton, has attracted thousands of visitors, and there's still time to see the exhibit.
The exhibit will be open during library hours and 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday through Sunday, Jan. 29. For daily hours, call 937-229-4234 or visit 
Since this year's all-new exhibit, "No Place like Home," opened just after Thanksgiving, an estimated 3,000 people have already visited the display of more than 200 Nativities, also called crèches, at the University of Dayton's Roesch Library.
One particular Nativity set made of glistening mother-of-pearl has emerged as the star of the show, drawing visitors' attention and rave reviews. Crafted in the Holy Land, "A Staircase to Heaven" by Issa Abu Aita depicts not only Christ’s birth but also the Last Supper, Eucharist, Annunciation, Crucifixion and Redemption.
"This handcrafted piece is one of our more beautiful and unique pieces," said Kathleen Webb, dean of University libraries. "The iridescent figures are set against a backdrop of multicolored mother-of-pearl reminiscent of stained glass windows.
"Visitors have been amazed at the intricate carvings and the beauty of the background. With its depiction of Christ's birth, life and death, this crèche reflects the themes of hope and redemption that permeate the Christmas season."
Guided tours are still available for this year's all-new exhibit, but must be requested in advance. The exhibit has been very popular with church, school and senior groups. The theme of this year's show, "No Place Like Home" features the many different ways people of cultures around the world depict Christ’s first home. Also new this year, spectacular large-scale settings are on display on the seventh floor. Call 937-229-4214 to schedule an appointment.
Although the seasonal display is closing soon, it's always Christmas at the Marian Library on the seventh floor of Roesch Library. A selection of about 30 Nativity scenes, remain on display throughout the year, open to groups as well as individuals. The Marian Library Gallery also showcases exhibits of contemporary Marian art from around the world several times a year. The gallery is open throughout the year 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and Saturday and Sunday by appointment only. For appointments and group tours, call the Marian Library at 937-229-4214.
University of Dayton's Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute is a globally recognized center for the study of Mary, the mother of Jesus, and holds the world's largest collection of printed materials and artifacts devoted to her. The collection includes more than 100,000 books and pamphlets in more than 50 languages, including the oldest dated from1473 right up to contemporary publications. The collection includes films, videos, cards, statues, rosaries and even stamps and wine labels.
The collection includes nearly 3,000 crèches from nearly 50 countries as well as Marian art from around the world. Each year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, the library opens a new exhibit of Nativity sets drawn from its vast collection of nearly 3,000 crèches from around the world.
Visit for information and directions and for more information on the Marian Library. 

Katy Kelly, communications and outreach librarian, at 937-229-4274 and

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