Today’s seva story #69 of 100 is from Jeri who lives in San Francisco. I am collecting 100 seva stories for inspiration, ideas and to spread positive news. Seva means selfless service for the benefit of community and environment.

Jeri writes,

Bethlehem AD

“In 1991, our family, along with some our friends decided that it would be special to offer a live nativity scene for our community during the holiday season. It has become such a special part of the season! Although it was special the first year, it continues to be refined and to grow each year and we feel blessed that the community has welcomed the event year after year.  There now are about 300 volunteers who we call “actors”, each taking a part in making the town of Bethlehem come alive and each year there are upwards of 30,000 people that come through and visit us during the three night event. This is a completely free event to the community.  Guests start their way walking through the village of Bethlehem where they encounter the tax collectors, watch as villagers make pottery, see folk dancers, shepherds tending their animals, inn keepers, and more. At the end of traveling through this alive town, visitors come to the manager where a live baby Jesus is with Mary and Joseph and over a dozen angels are choreographed to beautiful music. the directors of the production are careful in keeping things as close to historically correct as possible. My father and mother are in charge of the live animals which include camels, brahma bulls, donkeys, sheep, goats, horses, geese, chickens, rabbits, and more. My dad even sleeps out on the lot at night to be sure the animals are all safe and taken care of. A few years ago, I was asked to coordinate the “kings/wise men” where I coordinate 3-5 community VIPs each night, helping them with costuming, beards and make-up. What is special about this event is how inclusive it is as we have volunteers from just about every religion and Bethlehem AD has become a tradition for families near and far.  We are the largest living nativity scene in the western United States!”

Please share your Seva story with me so we can spread the Seva! Aloha and Namaste,  Johanna Waters