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Panorama tells story of Jesus

By Staff
Church members perform in yearly show’s 16 scenes
By DAN PARSONS
Staff Writer
As Christmas approaches, its true meaning will be explained at Old Ford Church of Christ, beginning Wednesday and ending Friday.
Visitors are invited to drive by 16 scenes depicting the life of Christ as portrayed by live actors and animals. The performance, called the Live Drive-Through Christmas Panorama, is a performance the church has put on annually since 1995, when there were eight scenes depicting the life of Christ.
Now in its 13th year, more scenes from Jesus’ life will be shown than ever before, according to Old Ford minister Eddie Bowen.
During the three-night event, the church hopes to clarify the initial meaning of Christmas in a world that sometimes loses touch with the season’s true message, Bowen said.
The Christmas story begins with the Roman census, which required Mary and Joseph to make the trek to Bethlehem to be counted. It was on that journey that Jesus was born. The panorama also depicts Jesus’ life, death on the cross and resurrection, according to Bowen.
The event, free and open to the public, runs from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. each night. All scenes are performed by members of the church, their friends and family.
A path, lined with luminaria and that begins at N.C. Highway 171, will guide visitors through the scenes in order. Pamphlets explaining each scene will be distributed at the first scene.
Bowen said the panorama entertained visitors in 1,571 cars in 2001.
Participants will begin setting up scenery today, Hardison said. Finishing touches will be put on the scenes Wednesday before a meal is served to the actors, she said.