“Blessing of the Bambinelli” Set for Lewiston, Rangeley, Sabattus, Lisbon Falls, Jay, and Farmington

LEWISTON---A wonderful tradition, originating during the papacy of Pope St. John Paul II, will be renewed at several Maine churches on December 11, the third Sunday of Advent. All children and families are encouraged to bring the Baby Jesus from their nativity sets at home for a “Blessing of the Bambinelli” to remind all of the joyous event of Jesus’ arrival in the manger.

In Rome, families fill St. Peter’s Square on Gaudete Sunday (the third Sunday of Advent) for the blessing of the Gesù Bambino, the ‘little baby Jesus.’ On this day, the children bring from home their Christ-child figures, their bambinelli, in hands, in pockets, in backpacks, from their own family nativity scenes. Then, during the noontime Angelus address, the Holy Father invites all to hold up their bambinelli for a special blessing of the Christ-child figures, the children, and their families. Upon returning home, the figure is set safely out of sight for the remainder of Advent until happily placed in the crèche with the arrival of Christmas.

The blessings in Maine will be offered at:

St. Joseph Church, 133 Middle Street
Sunday at 10:30 a.m.

St. Rose of Lima Church, 1 Church Street
Sunday at 8:30 a.m.

Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, 122 Ash Street
Sunday at 7 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

Holy Family Church, 607 Sabattus Street
Sunday at 11 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Holy Cross Church, 1080 Lisbon Street
Sunday at 8:30 a.m.

Lisbon Falls
Holy Trinity Church, 67 Frost Hill Avenue
Sunday at 10:30 a.m.

St. Luke Church, 19 Lake Street
Sunday at 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m.

Our Lady of the Rosary Church, 131 High Street
Sunday at 8:30 a.m.

“We invite young and old, children and adults, to participate in this powerful witness to our celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. The nativity scene is a school of life where we can learn the secret of pure love and joy,” said Fr. Daniel Greenleaf, pastor of Prince of Peace Parish in Lewiston.