I’ve done this for years whenever I put up the Christmas lights outside our ancestral home in good ole’ Brook-a-leen!

Outside in the nativity display, I’d make sure to place the illuminated Baby Jesus in the little bed.

And without fail, someone would pass the house and tell me, “….why did you put Him in there now…don’t you know, He hasn’t been born yet!?


Yes he has, and besides…it’s a decoration…not the actual Baby Jesus.
But year after year, I’d do the same thing, and always get the same response.

This year, there will be no Baby Jesus on the Morristown Green.

Nor will there be a Nativity Scene.

But thank God, it’s not due to any politically correct considerations.

Last year’s Nativity set was burned in a garage fire during the summer, according to Jennifer Wehring, spokeswoman for The Morristown Partnership, a nonprofit group that contracts with The Trustees of the Green to produce events there.

“But The Morristown Partnership does not produce the Nativity,” she explained. “A private family anonymously produces and installs it every year.”

It’s taking a while for the replacement Nativity set to arrive, said Wehring, who added the family raised funds for a new set by sending a letter to local churches.
Senior Pastor Neill Tolboom of the United Methodist Church on the Green confirmed his church was one of those that contributed to the effort.

“To my knowledge, the plastic figures were ordered the first week in November,” Tolboom said, “but they haven’t come in yet.”

Wehring said that if a Nativity appears on the Green, it will do so sometime during the season because of the extra effort required.

The Rabbinical College of America annually installs the Menorah display on the Green but also hasn’t done so yet this year.

“The Morristown Partnership just produces the lights and activities,” Wehring explained.

There’s no church-state issue with erecting the Nativity, or a Menorah display, on the Green because the property is privately held. It is owned by The Trustees of the Morristown Green Inc., an organization that was entrusted with the Green’s maintenance by The Presbyterian Church in Morristown more than 100 years ago.

But I do wonder….when they do get the Nativity Scene in place, should it be before the 25th….will it include the Baby Jesus in place, or will He be left out until Christmas Day?

Or April, as some historians say that’s when He really was born?

Does Baby Jesus go in the manger before Christmas or on Christmas Day?