Holy Rosary crib tradition a holiday classic

Michael Bushnell
Northeast News

This real photo postcard of the Holy Rosary Church’s Christmas crib was taken during the 1941 holiday season.

Missionaries of St. Charles founded Holy Rosary Parish, located at 911 E. Missouri Avenue, in the 1880s to serve the Italian immigrants in Kansas City, who settled near the old Market Square (now City Market) area.

Still standing after the ravages of three fires over its 125-year history, the church is active in its Columbus Park neighborhood community.

According to Father JosephVicentini, the crib is always the first thing to be put up for the Celebration of the Nativity.

The crib tradition was actually started by St. Francis of Assisi as a way to celebrate what we now call a nativity scene.

It is actually built in a series of stages, not becoming truly complete until the feast of the Epiphany, which announces the arrival of the three Magi and their subsequent acknowledgement of Jesus as the revelation of God to mankind in human form. (It is celebrated on January 6, “the twelfth day of Christmas”).

This card was sent from Xavier, Kansas, to a monk at the St. Joseph Monastery on June 7, 1948.

The message reads, “Dear Brother, So glad you are well, and I was delighted to receive your letter. Arrangements are nearly all made. Glad you are having a new building. My retreat was made early (February). I am disappointed she did not remember you – you will be received with open arms when you come.

Don’t wait too late. I may not be here when you come. Love and Prayers, your Brother.”

Although the location of where this elaborate nativity scene was erected in the church is unknown, Father Vicentini indicated it might have been set up in the front-right corner of the sanctuary near a sidealtar.

The postcard bears no publisher’s mark, either, so it may have been a homemade card, created by a parishioner at Holy Rosary.

Want Northeast News articles sent straight to your inbox each week? Subscribe below!
Enter your email address and click on the Get Instant Access button.
We respect your privacy

Comments are closed.

  • Remember This: Glass food storage

    February 19th, 2020
    by

    Dorri Partain Contributor As homemakers embraced electric refrigerators, first introduced for home use in 1927, they were now able to […]


    Batter up!

    February 19th, 2020
    by

    Michael Bushnell Publisher This week, our tour of Negro League stadiums brings us to Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Named […]


    REMEMBER THIS? Stockpiled provisions

    February 12th, 2020
    by

    Dorri Partain Northeast News In the event of a nuclear attack on American soil, can citizens survive on a diet […]


    Ponce de Leon Park, home to the Atlanta Black Crackers

    February 12th, 2020
    by

    Michael Bushnell Publisher This week we make a stop in Atlanta, Georgia for a look at the iconic Ponce de […]


    Remember This? Mugs Up

    February 5th, 2020
    by

    Dorri Partain Contributor Got a nickel in your pocket?   Then head over to the closest Mugs Up Root Beer stand, […]


  • Negro American League Spotlight: Crosley Field, home of the Cincinnati Reds

    February 5th, 2020
    by

    Michael Bushnell Publisher This week we stop by Crosley Field in Cincinnati, Ohio, long-time home of the Cincinnati Reds, the […]


    REMEMBER THIS? Chiefs 1970 Season

    January 29th, 2020
    by

    Dorri Partain Northeast News The Kansas City Chiefs first played a championship game in 1966, losing to the Green Bay […]


    Many teams played at Municipal Stadium

    January 29th, 2020
    by

    Michael Bushnell Northeast News Located at 22nd and Brooklyn, Municipal Stadium was the home to many professional sports teams long […]


    Remember This? Rotary phone

    January 22nd, 2020
    by

    Dorri Partain Northeast News Even without dials, we still “dial” a number when making a telephone call. When inventor Alexander […]


    Before merger, Kansas City phoned Home

    January 22nd, 2020
    by

    Michael Bushnell Northeast News Kansas City was serviced by two telephone companies when the North American Postcard Publishing Company printed […]


  • Faces Of Northeast


  • Remember This?


  • retorts illustrated by bryan stalder


  • Want articles sent directly to your inbox each week? Subscribe below!
    We respect your privacy and will not distribute your information.