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New Jersey Church Reaches Hundreds with Live Nativity


Since 2002, Covenant Christian Reformed Church in North Haledon, NJ, has produced two live nativity services each December, drawing about 600 people each year.

Alexa Anderson and Eric Venturo played Mary and Joseph in last year’s nativity production.

Photo by Mike Genzink

The services include a fictional story, the portrayal of the events of Luke 2, and solos and carols. More than 80 people from the church and its youth programs participate as cast or crew, along with a pony, sheep, goats, and chickens from a nearby farm.

At last year’s event, the church performed the play Believe by Faye Couch Reeves.

Russ Unrath, a deacon and junior high youth leader, said, “It was a good opportunity to share God’s Word and set an example for others about what it means to be part of a church family.”

Wayne Vriesema designs and helps build the sets. He was instrumental in persuading the church to take on this challenging project back in 2002.

“It’s a good way to reach out to the community and invite people who wouldn’t otherwise go to church,” he said.

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