Each year in the season leading up to Christmas, we see scenes of the blessed Holy Family everywhere, even in our secular world. Usually the representations of the Madonna, Joseph, and the Baby Jesus that we see are of white Europeans. The crèche that Christ Church Cathedral places on our lawn has long depicted only one face of our beautifully diverse, multicultural congregation. As your new Canon for the Circle, I will be always mindful that our neighbors here in the heart of the city come in all colors, immigration status and economic conditions. I want all our neighbors here to feel included, welcomed and valued.
I thought to myself, “When our neighbors experience our vision of the Holy Family, do they see themselves represented?”
This year our crèche will look a little different because we have added more inclusive visions of the Holy Family to our crèche. Two new images of the Madonna and Child feature Black and Asian faces and will be seen in the front windows of the crèche. On the back windows will hang the image of a refugee Holy Family and our image of a homeless Holy Family. We are grateful to iconographic artist Kelly Latimore for his permission to use his creations in this way.
We invite you to spend some time at the crèche and become open to experiencing the Holy Family in ways that you may not have seen or felt for those different from ourselves. We hope that this experience helps visitors understand that the experience of Christmas is for all people, regardless of how we look.
Canon Mariann Scott
Canon for the Circle
Christ Church Cathedral
Left to right: Holy Family of the Streets, Refugees: Holy Family, Keep Watch, and Madonna and Child. All images ©2021 by Kelly Latimore. Used by permission.