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article imageCamels travel Scottish streets for nativity procession

By Lynn Curwin     Dec 19, 2010 in World
Carstairs - Three camels joined a donkey and some people in a Scottish community on Saturday to take part in a nativity procession along the street.
The animals were accompanied by Mary, Joseph and three wise men as they travelled from Carstairs Junction, playing the part of Nazareth, to the village of Carstairs, set as Bethlehem.
Street signs were changed for the event and houses along the route had signs up saying they had no room.
"Rather than waiting for people daring to cross the threshold of the church door, we thought we had to take the Christmas message outside,” the BBC quoted Reverend Alan Gibson, from the United Parish of Carstairs and Carstairs Junction, as saying.
"The parade has been designed to represent the nativity story in an engaging and thought-provoking way."
Before the event, Gibson told Christian Today that he hoped it would not only bring the community together, but encourage people to think about the birth of Jesus.
“In previous years, our church has always celebrated Christmas within the four walls of the building,” he said. “This year, however, Christmas is being celebrated by the community, and we are very grateful to the many people who have made this happen.”
Tunnocks got involved, creating a special version of their caramel wafers, with limited edition wrappers identifying them as “camel” wafers, and donating 2,000 of them to help with publicity.
The Herald reported that Gibson convinced local businesses to cover the £1000 cost of bringing the camels from England after both Edinburgh Zoo and the Blair Drummond Safari Park said they could not spare any of theirs. They came from Joseph’s Amazing Camels.
Although camels are often used in nativity scenes, the Bible does not mention camels in connection with the wise men and does not say how soon after Jesus’ birth they made their visit.
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