Community volunteers hours are available to anyone who helps transform a corner of Redwood City into the tiny town of Bethlehem for three nights in December.
Since 1992, Bethlehem A.D. has opened the door to the past offering the San Francisco Bay Area the opportunity to encounter what life was like on the night that the Messiah was born. The largest living nativity in California, Bethlehem A.D. is free to all visitors and can be found at 1305 Middlefield Road near Main Street in Redwood City.
From December 21 through December 23, the little town Bethlehem is alive with Roman tax collectors and census takers, marketplace craftsmen, folk dancers, and young scholars at Hebrew school. The dreaded centurions march through the village enforcing Roman law and sometimes help direct downtown Redwood City traffic. King Herod rides his chariot through the streets looking for the new born Messiah while declaring that Herod is the only king.
Angels on high celebrate and proclaim the birth of the Messiah while protecting the Holy Family huddled in the stable. Wise Men and Women who bear a strong resemblance to civic and political leaders come to Bethlehem with their gifts.
Music fills the air and a sense of joy and anticipation permeates the entire city block, as well as a deep sense of community uniting people of diverse cultural, religious, and economic backgrounds.
Volunteers are needed for building the village, sewing, distributing flyers and posters, helping with costumes as well as general assistance to create a nativity scene that is authentic as possible. Every Saturday through December 23, workdays are held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lunch is provided.
For more information about volunteering for Bethlehem A.D., call 650.368.3821 extension 5, or visit bethlehemad.com.