Church holds ‘drive-thru’ nativity

Published 1:29 am Saturday, December 12, 2015

In the politically correct times we live in, Christmas and Jesus Christ have come under attack on several fronts. However, honoring Jesus Christ as the reason for Christmas is safe at Plainview Baptist Church.

The church invites the public to its annual free, live, drive-through nativity Saturday, Dec. 12. The nativity is three scenes depicting the birth of Jesus. The church has been putting on the nativity for over 20 years.

Approximately 50 volunteers will be in full costume during three shifts. The first scene shows the shepherd with angels actually flying with an assist from a John Deere tractor, while the second scene depicts the baby Jesus in the manger with his parents, Mary and Joseph, surrounded by live donkeys, sheep, goats and calves. The third scene shows Jesus as a toddler with the three wise men.

The nativity will be available for viewing from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The church is located at 55179 Louisiana Highway 60.

Volunteer Debbie Miley becomes emotional when talking about what the nativity means to her. Among her duties is publicity.

“Absolutely, the nativity is a blessing to me,” she said. “We get to tell the real story of Christmas.”
“We’re putting it on for the community, but we get the blessing out of it,” Miley said, as her voice broke. “Jesus is the reason for the season.”

Plainview Pastor Scott Breland experienced all the work that goes into the nativity for the first time last year after he came to Plainview in March of 2014. Plainview is his first assignment of leading a church. He was previously music minister at Superior Avenue Baptist Church and Little Pass Baptist Church in Charenton. He is a 2001 Bogalusa High School graduate.

“Getting all the clothes down from the attic, contacting people for the animals and setting up the logistics is a lot of work,” Breland said. “The church itself sees the importance of this ministry due to the fact over recent years the real meaning of Christmas has been lost. The secularization of Christmas is a real issue that Christians, including myself, can get caught up in if not careful.”

Church secretary and nativity volunteer Effie Clayton said food and hot chocolate will be provided on scene.

The nativity scenes will be put up Friday and fine-tuning will be done early Saturday. The nativity scenes will all be removed before everybody leaves Saturday night. Organizers expect anywhere from 60 to 100 vehicles to view the nativity.

“The members of the church take a lot of pride putting this on every year,” Breland said. “It’s not an easy task, but it’s an important task. Last year I felt like I was in the way all the time, because they’re like a well-oiled machine because they’ve been doing it for so long. This year, I hope I can pull my own weight.”