Christmas is in the air in Vatican City as an 83 foot fir tree arrived in St. Peter’s Square this morning. The tree was brought in from Passo dell’Abbate, located in the Southern Italian region of Calabria.
The annual tree lighting ceremony will take place on December 19th, which coincides with the unveiling of the Nativity scene in the Square.
According to a Vatican press release, this year’s Nativity scene is entitled “Il Presepe in Opera” (The Nativity in Opera) and will be composed of 25 life-sized terracotta statues.
Donated by the “Verona for the Arena” Foundation, the Nativity scene will be inspired the works of opera for which the city is famous.
“This also provides the basis for the title of the display, which is a play on the double meaning of the word ‘opera’ in Italian: it is ‘at work’, in the sense that its message is universal and active,” the press release explained.