City of Assisi Transformed At Christmas

As per tradition, the blessing of the Nativity scene and lighting of the Christmas tree on the square of the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, will take place December 8 on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, at the end of the 5 PM Eucharistic celebration in the lower church. The Mass will be presided over by the Custos of the Sacred Convent of Assisi, Friar Marco Moroni, OFM Conv. A choir of around 100 children from Assisi and Trento province will cheer up the evening by singing traditional Christmas carols.

This year’s theme will be water, which due to climate change is becoming an increasingly valuable common good to protect and share; an idea born to the Romanian population after mountain communities had to open this summer King the dams so that the inhabitants in the valley have water.

The crib, made of stone pine wood, also from the forests of Val di Non, was carved by Trentino artist Livio Recla and depicts the Holy Family. The hut, built by some citizen volunteers, is inspired by the ancient mountain “huts” of Trentino and bears a large snowflake in the center, a symbol of water and germinating life. Indeed, it is that of water as an increasingly precious common good to be protected and shared that is this year’s theme, according to an idea proposed by the people of Romeno themselves from the experience of last summer when mountain communities had to open dams so that the people downstream would have water. (Source:

Also following the same theme, and decorations of the tree are in the shape of snowflakes, also made by volunteers with woody material from the forests of Trentino and enriched with thoughts and wishes expressed by the children and teachers of the Romeno elementary school, who during the inauguration, in twinning with the children of the elementary school Istituto Comprensivo Assisi 1, will perform traditional Christmas songs. The 33-member San Romedio Chorale from Val di Non will also perform typical mountain songs during the ceremony. (Source:

It is a Christmas that involves the entire city of Assisi, which will be transformed into a big cradle. Statues and video mapping will be put on the facades of the churches and the main monuments of the city the frescoes of Giotto of the Basilica of San Francesco related to the theme of Nativity.


For those who wish to experience the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi tradition without traveling to Assisi Italy,  you go to this dedicated website and marvel at the videos posted online. It’s a voyage to a land of beauty that you can share with your friends and family. The event will also be streamed on the Facebook page San Francesco d’Assisi and on the youtube channel @BasilicasanFrancescodAssisi.

Nativity scene and lighting of the Christmas tree on the square of the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi. Source: