Reflections (at different times) on ecumenical or interfaith issues, theology, spirituality, ministry, the arts, politics, popular culture, or life in general ... occasionally, just some funny stuff.
Wednesday, 12 December 2018
Christmas with the “Caganer”
a self-confessed “Christmas nerd”, it isn’t every day I learn a new fact about
Christmas.I learned a new Christmas
fact a few weeks ago watching a TV panel quiz on the ABC.
many places in Europe, public Nativity Scenes are large, involving an army of
shepherds, a huge choir of angels, many hangers-on in the Wise Men’s entourage,
multiple guests eating and drinking in the inn, and a variety of people working
on nearby farms.In many areas of Spain,
there is also a figure of a man in an obscure corner of the Nativity Scene
engaged in relieving himself.This
figure is called a “caganer”.
never heard of the “caganer” until a
few weeks ago.I checked the facts.I didn’t just trust the TV presenters, even
if the programme was initially shown on the highly salubrious and reliable BBC.I consulted with that noted authority on all
things factual, Professor Google.It
checked out.It wasn’t “Fake News” (as the man with the funny comb-over says).
many Spanish communities, the “caganer”
helps to engage the interest of children in the Nativity Scene, as they try to
find the hidden and obscure “caganer”
in a “Where’s Wally?” sort of way.
the “caganer” has an important and
profound message for us.When God chose
to come into our world as a human being, the Christ-child was born into the
midst of our real world, not in some artificial, prettied-up, Disney-style
world.The “caganer” attending to an urgent call of nature at the same moment
when the Word became Flesh and dwelt among us bears testimony to this.
a Blesséd Christ-Mass, a Merry Christmas, and some Happy Holidays.
Word has become Flesh, and lives in our midst.