Nativity figures for Mayflower Church in Minneapolis, 2019

This commission from Mayflower Church allowed me to remember the Christmas Story as a primal teaching of Love in defiance of empire.

As these familiar ancient characters of the Nativity Story rose from my papier-mâché process of crumpled and melded newspaper layers, I found continual parallels of the brave love and generosity needed to shelter a child amidst the violent edicts of the Roman Empire to the courage demanded of us in these current days to shelter the babies being born at THIS moment into THIS world. How can we be like these ancient ones to receive these new little ones so they can flourish with immense love, and peace?

  • Thank you to Mayflower Church for this commission, and to Eli’jah Carroll, Dillon Sebastian, Nancy Grundahl, Cathy Brown, Liz Pedersen and Rose Spieler-Sandberg who helped me papier-mâché these figures.

photos by Liz Welch, Sandy Spieler, Bridget Lally