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A Journey through Aesthetic Realms

Church of the Nativity: The Sacred Birthplace of Beloved Lord Jesus Christ

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Bethlehem, meaning “House of Bread” in Hebrew, stands at the border of Israel and Palestine, just over five miles from Jerusalem, and is a prominent Palestinian city. The sacred birthplace is now the site of the Church of the Nativity. One of the oldest churches in the world, it was built between 327 and 333 AD. It is one of three churches constructed under the direction of Christian Roman Emperor Constantine and his mother Helena.

Admission to the Church of the Nativity is free, and upon entry, visitors have to stoop low in an act of humility before entering the holy place. The “Door of Humility” has been reduced in size twice from its original dimensions. Featured in the Church of the Nativity is the Chapel of the Manger, Grotto of the Nativity, and a 14-pointed Silver Star on the floor that marks the exact place where Lord Jesus Christ was born. The dimly lit Grotto where Jesus Christ was born can be accessed by descending the stairs into the basement of the Church of the Nativity. It is a magical and inspiring atmosphere, where many visitors are overcome with emotion.

The Chapel of the Manger, or “the crib,” marks the scene of the Nativity and lies next to the Grotto. A small altar there is dedicated to the “Adoration of the Magi,” referring to the Three Wise Men: Caspar, Balthazar, and Melchior, who travelled from the East to worship the baby Jesus.

In 2012, the Church of the Nativity was declared an endangered World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational and Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Now, Bethlehem and the Church of the Nativity continue to be an important pilgrimage destination, and among the most visited locations for Christians during Christmas.

In reverent celebration of the blessed birthday of Lord Jesus Christ, we are honored to present a touching rendition of “Silent Night,” performed by Âu Lạc’s (or Vietnam's) celebrated pop superstar Hồ Quỳnh Hương, acclaimed Korean theatre and opera star Ms. Choi Su-jyung, and a shining new star from the USA, Usen Isong.

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