Members of Martinez United Methodist Church will bring to life the story of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth today with their ninth annual A Walk Through Bethlehem.
From 6 to 8 p.m., about 100 members of the church will don the garb of first century shepherds, scribes, carpenters and Roman soldiers in the re-created village of Bethlehem. A Roman census taker will tally visitors to the village, which includes livestock, a pottery shop, a carpenter's shop, a bakery and a restaurant.
The event also will feature a church couple and their newborn child portraying Joseph, Mary and Jesus in a manger.
Planning for the village begins in July, and members of the church's special events committee spent last weekend assembling the many buildings within the re-created town, committee chairwoman Sherry Norviel said.
"It's one of the main things that our church really looks forward to doing," she said.
Church members decided to start the Christmas tradition about a decade ago after seeing fliers about a Bethlehem village in a church in the Atlanta area. Norviel said it started small but has grown to welcome about 1,000 guests each year. The event and parking are both free.
IF YOU GO
What: A Walk Through Bethlehem
Where: Martinez United Methodist Church, 3614 Washington Road, Martinez
When: 6-8 p.m. today (Sunday, Dec. 17)
For more information: Call (706) 863-6541
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