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Relic of Jesus’ crib to return to Bethlehem

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After spending more than 1,000 years in Rome, a wooden fragment valued by Catholics as part of the crib in which Jesus was born will be welcomed back to the Holy Land on Friday.

The fragment, part of a relic stored in the Italian capital’s Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, was described by the Custody of the Holy Land, run by Franciscan friars, as a “gift” from Pope Francis.

“It has contributed for centuries to marking the religiousness of the faithful in Rome and from elsewhere,” the custodians wrote, saying that large numbers of pilgrims from around the world went there to worship it.

The fragment will first stop in Jerusalem on Friday morning, where celebrations including a Mass and procession are planned.

It will then move to Bethlehem, traditionally known as Jesus’ birthplace, on Saturday, ahead of the start of the Advent season.

The so-called Holy Crib relic will be put on permanent display in the Franciscan Church of St Catherine, next to the Basilica of the Nativity, for pilgrims coming to the Palestinian city to worship.

According to the Custody of the Holy Land, the so-called Holy Crib relic was donated by St Sophronius, Patriarch of Jerusalem, to Pope Theodore I around the middle of the seventh century.

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Support our journalism with a contribution of any size

Nigeria's media space is swamped with falsehood, deceit and delusion. Just a handful abides by the truth. TheNigerian is one of the unique platforms helping to shape the global narrative about Nigeria and her citizens across the world. It's quite costly to maintain this brand of journalism, however.

Readers from around the world, like you, make TheNigerian's work possible. We need your support to deliver quality, investigative journalism – and to keep it open for everyone. At a time when factual, honest reporting is critical, your support is essential in protecting our editorial independence. Every contribution, however big or small, is so valuable for our future.

Our brand of professional citizens' journalism requires a contribution from members of the public, patronage and sponsorship to thrive. We rely on this financial support to be able to carry out our numerous obligations of training, running cost, production, printing and general services. We also embark on Corporate Social Responsibilities through educational programs on our TV, newspaper and blogs.

Make a token donation to support us:
Account Name: Patriot and Sage Digital Communication Ltd
Account No: 1015619537
Bank Name: Zenith Bank

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