By Rosy Figueroa
Vatican – In the bowels of the Peruvian Andes, the Chopcca community, from the hand of five artists from Huancavelica, models the Nativity scene that this year will adorn the Plaza de San Pedro next to a majestic pine from the forests of Andalo, in the Dolomites mountain range, Italy.
The Peruvian manger wants to commemorate the two hundred years of the Independence of the country, reproducing the life of the Andean peoples and how they symbolize the universal call to Salvation, when the Son of God was incarnated to save every man and woman on earth, in any language, pueblo, culture and nation to which they belong.
Statues of the Child Jesus, the Virgin Mary, Saint Joseph, the Magi and the shepherds are life-size made with various materials such as ceramics, maguey wood (agave) and fiberglass, while the vestments represent typical costumes of the Chopcca peasant community.
Jesus will have the appearance of a child “Hilipuska”, so called because it is wrapped in a typical Huancavelica blanket and is tied with a “chumpi” or braided belt. The Three Wise Men will have saddlebags or sacks with typical food from Huancavelica, like potato, quinoa, kiwicha (amaranth), cañihua (Andean grain), and they will be accompanied by llamas that carry a Peruvian flag on their backs.
The birth of the Savior is announced by an angel child, who plays the typical wind instrument called Wajrapuco. In the Bethlehem there are also statues of various animals belonging to the local fauna such as: alpacas, vicuñas, sheep, vizcachas, parihuanas and the Andean condor, national symbol of Peru.
The manger was blessed by the Apostolic Nuncio in Peru, Mons. Nicola Girasoli, who stressed that this birth signifies the participation of the country in such an important moment for the Catholic faith as Christmas is.
On Friday 10 from December, to 17:00 hours, in St. Peter's Square, the opening ceremony of the Nativity Scene and the Christmas Tree will take place, which will be chaired by Archbishop Fernando Vérgez Alzaga, President of the Governorate of the State of Vatican City.