I'm still trying to take a better photo of my Christmas tree - until then, this is the very best Christmas tree in the world, with a lovely Neapolitan presepio at the base.
We really have the Germans to thank for the continuity of the Christmas tree. I read where the Holy Father has two trees in his apartment. (I hope his kitty cat is with him.) He also has all of his Bavarian delicacies to eat, and Kloster beer. I wonder if he will have marzipan? It would be fun to spend Christmas with him.
One should read Athanasius Contra Mundum for a fine history of the Christmas Tree and it's Christian significance.
This is the best close up I could find of the Presepio, from the collection of Loretta Hines Howard. In addition to this donation to the Met, she also donated a lovely presepio to Regina Laudes, the Abbey in Bethlehem Connecticut, where Mother Delores Hart resides.