Tuesday, December 20, 2016

The Crib of Christ...in a Cave.

Hello, my dear blogmates!  What a fantastic month it is!  December sashayed into our lives a couple of weeks ago,  dropped some Christmas spirit on us, and, now it's beginning to draw down, and come to a close!   The New Year, 2017, is coming up fast and furiously!

My story begins with St. Francis of Assisi.  We know he was born into a wealthy family...I think he had six siblings, and his father was a silk merchant.   He was actually baptized as Giovanni, but, it seems as though  his father wanted a french name for him, and later started calling his son, Francesco. From my research, I detected some conflict in the original decision of his name when he was born.

At about the age of 20 or 21, Francis went off to a war, between Assisi and Perugia.  During that time he was taken prisoner, and upon being released, after his father paid a ransom, his life ventured in a new direction. Francis channeled his focus toward Christianity and God, preferring to live his life in poverty. However, Francis did need to earn some money, in order to pay his Father back for the ransom that freed him from prison.  He did eventually pay his back his Father, and even went so far as to strip down to bare necessities and give dad the clothes he was wearing!
  That was the last time he and his father spoke.

After Francis had visited the historical birthplace of Christ, he talked the Pope,  Honorious III, into allowing him to construct a manger with hay and the use of 2 live animals.  This was done somewhere around the year 1223, in a mountain cave above Greccio in Italy.  Francis would invite the villagers to come and view as he preached a special Mass, and told the story of the "Babe of Bethlehem".  It is not known for sure, but some sources say that live villagers would sit in and enact the Nativity scene as it was told.

Below is a photo that is said to be the first Nativity location in Italy.
  However, I cannot verify its authenticity.  
*the photo is available on Wikipedia and Yahoo images *

The Nativity became so popular, it soon spread to Europe, and, today, we have continued the custom of building and reconstructing this holy scene during the Christmas season, to celebrate the birth of Christ.  

Here are a few pictures of  Nativity scenes I have taken in my daily travels around town.  I hope you enjoy them.  I know...you're wondering where my Nativity scene is.  I don't have one for the yard, but hope to display one next Christmas.  I do have a small Nativity that I will set up soon near my Christmas tree.


* St. George Catholic Church *  Fort Worth, TX * photo by Suzanne

* A neighborhood in Haltom City, TX * photo by Suzanne

* Grapevine Hwy * North Richland Hills, TX * photo by Suzanne

* Branson, Missouri * photo by Suzanne

And, who might this be?
Why it is the 'keeper of the grounds' himself, St. Francis of Assisi!
* photo by Suzanne * my back yard * Fort Worth, TX

During one of my trips back to Kansas City, oh around 1995, my mother sent me home with this wonderful statue of St. Francis.  He has watched over my yard and the critters that visit for many years.  He tolerates nature's moods, he has been knocked over, and, pummeled with mulberries and pecans.  Yet, he still stands tall, and remains devout in his purpose.

So, dear readers...that's it for today.  We'll be celebrating Christmas in a few short days, and, remembering the great story of the birth of Christ!  Until just a few years ago, I had no idea that St. Francis was so compelled to take on a project that would travel the world 'round, and be a lasting symbol for such a precious event.   I am grateful for St. Francis' devotion to all people and animals during his lifetime as a priest.

***  My appreciation goes out to:
Yahoo images
The state of Texas
Branson, Missouri

***  And, I wish to thank you all for coming by just a few days before Christmas and visiting my blog.  I just want to remind you to be safe on this important holiday, in your travels.  And, please don't overload your electrical sockets to keep the beautiful Christmas lights aglow!

I've already blown a fuse in my house by plugging in one too many items.  Thank goodness I thought to check the fuse box, or I would have no TV, and, no Christmas lights...go figure!

Flashing Lights from AnimateIt.net

***  Please stop in and say hello if you get the chance!  And, have a very
Merry Christmas, from the family of KardKornerKrib! 

Love, health, and happiness to you all! ♥


  1. Hi, Suzanne!

    I enjoyed this history lesson about St. Francis of Assisi and his inspiration to create the very first Nativity scene at Christmas. Little did he know he was starting a tradition that would spread around the world and endure down through the centuries to this very day.

    I also enjoyed seeing the displays around your part of Texas and up in Branson. How nice of your mother to give you that statue of St. Francis for your garden a decade ago! Think of all the changes he has seen around your property over the years and all the stories he could tell. I imagine Scootie was responsible for pelting him with fruit and nuts a few of those times. :) What is the statue made of?

    Thank you for the helpful reminder about common sense safety practices this holiday. I shudder to think how many tragic fires will be started and how many Christmases ruined by overloaded electrical sockets. A few days ago I got an email from my cousin up north who told me that he and his cat were forced to evacuate their apartment after fire erupted in a neighboring unit. They will be staying with friends through the holidays and for the first month or two of 2017 until repairs on the building are completed. I feel very badly for them being driven from their home just before the holidays, but at least they weren't injured.

    I hope your Christmas will be a very happy one in spite of the fact that Karo won't be with you this year. I can honestly state that the greatest Christmas present I received this year (a few months early) was having you back in my life as one of my very best friends ever. Thank you very much for reconnecting with me, dear Suzanne!

    Merry Christmas to you and Scootie and all your loved ones!

    1. Good afternoon, Shady! I just love St. Francis! My poor statue has a small hole at the top of his head now, but, it's not too visible. He's been moved around to various gardens, and, glued back together in a few spots, but, he's still trucking! I have read about St. Francis some over the years, his story is so interesting and special.

      And, you're right...you do have to watch younger kids-they throw anything they pick up. Instead of skimming flat rocks across the creek, Scootie tries to pick boulders up and plop them into the water. It scares the ducks off!

      I'm sorry to hear about your cousin, but, glad he and his cat are safe. It's just a bad time of year to be displaced like that. Some of my lights on one side of my house and TV went off the other night, and, after the initial panic wore off, I decided to check one of the breaker boxes. Sure enough, one switch was tripped, and I was able to turn it back on. YAY! But, I think I had too much going on in that area.

      I went to the cemetery yesterday with some Christmas flowers for a visit. I've already had some tough moments this season without Karo, but, I'm hanging in there. We'll be picking Scootie up on Friday, and the races will begin, lol!

      Shady, I'm so glad you came by, and, I'm banking on this being a pretty good Christmas. I'm sending blessings and fair weather your way for a most enjoyable Christmas! Thank you so much for your friendship, which I treasure! It's so fun to learn about the music and entertainers of days gone by, and, in the present day. In my search for blogs like yours..well, yours is the only one I found to be so informative, colorful, and entertaining.

      Merry Christmas to you and yours, dear friend! See you soon! ♫

  2. Hi there Suzanne, you've gathered together a lovely post and it was interesting to read of the doings of St Francis and how the nativity scene has been perpetuated throughout the world.
    I also appreciate those nativity scene photos you've gathered in your area. As a small child I've always liked to look at them and I love the Christmas carols too. I remember some while further back in your blog you mentioned the St Francis statue you keep in your garden.

    I had a little chuckle at you already blowing a fuse from all your Christmas lights. At least you sorted things out. May their sparkle give you joy at this time of year.

    Before I finish, may I say how beautiful that photo of you and Santa is (on your side bar). Nowadays we can click off thousands of photos in no time but, back then, it was a different story... makes them all the more precious.

    Cheerio for now Dear Friend, hugs :D) xx

    1. Hello Sue. I'm glad to know you enjoy the Nativity scenes too, and, remembered my post from a few years back. I love to scout around town for great things to photograph, and, I try to be careful not to get into trouble climbing over fences and under gates, haha!

      My son helped me put up Christmas lites this year, and, with this old house, you have to use a few extension cords. I try not to overload, but, it got very cold that night, and I plugged an electric heater into the same strip with some other lites...guess it was too much. I don't like electric heaters much, but this one is new and a bit safer that some. Nevertheless, I decided it would be just as comfy to wrap up in a soft blanket instead of taking chances!

      Thank you very much for coming by Sue. And, thank you for your kind comments, I love to look at the old family photos. My mom sent me that photo with Santa, and also sent me the ones each of my brother and sister. One day I guess I'll post them with some sort of fun Christmas story! In those days you only got one or two chances to get a good photo...you're right, it makes them all the more precious.

      Have a wonderful, and warm Christmas dear friend! See you soon ♥

  3. Hello, great post. I enjoyed reading about Saint Francis. The various nativity scenes are pretty. I wish you all the best in 2017, a happy and healthy New Year!

    1. Hello Eileen. Thank you for coming by, I like to drive around during the holidays and look for pretty Christmas scenes in neighborhoods. I have always appreciated Saint Francis' story, and, knowing of his sacrifices. I hope you had a nice holiday, and, I look forward to seeing your lovely posts this new year! Happy New Year!


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