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angle-left Sagrada Família welcomes thousands to celebrate Christmas

Once again this Christmas, the Sagrada Família hosted a variety of events and activities for all audiences, inviting everyone to join in the Christmas spirit and share in the joy of these special days.

This year was even more special, celebrating the 800th anniversary of the first crèche, a commemoration that

gave everyone the opportunity to delve into the origins and meaning of the Nativity scene. Gaudí explained it on the Nativity façade, which features a crèche sculpted in stone, and some of the activities aimed to give us a deeper understanding.

One of the activities was a Christmas workshop for children aged 6 to 12. More than 500 people took part in the 34 sessions on this year’s programme. It included a guided tour led by a shepherd, a discovery game and making a pop-up Christmas card.

On Thursday 14 December at 7:00 pm, the Basilica filled with music and Christmas spirit with 1,713 people enjoying the traditional Christmas Concert. This year, it featured choirs from Agrupació Cor Madrigal, with children’s choirs from all over Catalonia and choirs from the Sagrada Família neighbourhood, including groups from the municipal music schools in the Eixample and Sant Andreu districts. They were accompanied by Orquestra Simfònica del Vallès conducted by Pere Lluís Biosca with Joan Seguí on the organ. During the performance, the audience was invited to sing along with some of the most popular Christmas songs.

Also, on Tuesday 19 December at 6:30 pm, the Sagrada Família hosted a carolling session on Carrer de la Marina, in front of the Nativity façade, with more than 280 singers from choirs in the Raval district. Each choir prepared a repertoire of traditional Catalan carols and songs from around the world. More than one thousand people came out to hear them sing.

From Wednesday 20 to Friday 22 December, the Basilica lit up the sculpture groups of the Nativity, the Adoration of the shepherds and the Adoration of the Magi on the Nativity façade. This activity brought to life the Nativity scenes sculpted in stone that Gaudí designed for this façade. The illumination was accompanied by music and narration, alternating between sessions in Spanish and Catalan, between 7:30 pm and 9:30 pm.

On 24 December at 7:00 pm, the Sagrada Família hosted Midnight mass for the little ones to celebrate Christmas. The service was led by Mons. David Abadias, Auxiliary Bishop of Barcelona, and afterwards the 1,434   mass-goers went outside for the adoration of the Baby Jesus on the Nativity façade.

Finally, from 27 to 31 December, the Basilica of the Sagrada Família took part in the Festival de la Infància (Children’s Festival) for the second year in a row, with the workshop “We’re building the towers. Want to help?”. More than 900 kids got to be builders for a day, making a replica of their favourite tower of the Evangelists to take home.