The Friends of the Crib – Malta (Għaqda Ħbieb tal-Presepju) strives to promote the Maltese ‘presepju’ as the main attraction of Malta’s Christmas scene, both from a religious aspect as well from a folklore and artistic way of expression. For the past 30 years, it has worked hard to regenerate the tradition of having a ‘presepju’ in every Maltese household.
Endorsed by the Valletta 2018 Foundation, the Maltese association is now going a step further by bringing together Europe’s Crib Associations for a meeting in Malta. Friends of the Crib – Malta hopes that by mingling Malta’s tradition with those of other countries it will get people the general public to understand that, while the ‘presepju’ is a great attraction for children, it also offers adults and artists a fertile area where to develop their creative talents.
The meeting was launched during the World Congress of Friends of the Creche in Bergamo, Italy, in mid-October 2016. The meeting will be spread over 5 days (7 – 11th Nov 2018) and will include discussions about the Culture of Christmas Cribs in Europe, guided tours of Valletta, Mdina and possibly Vittoriosa, three exhibitions of ‘presepju’ and related art, and a vocal concert by an established Maltese choir. Local participation during discussion sessions will be strictly by invitation. The general public and tourists will be able to visit exhibitions and attend the choral concert.
This project is also receiving the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Malta Tourism Authority and the International Council of the World Federation of Friends of the Crib, better known as the Universalis Foederatio Praesepistica.
It goes without saying that the celebration of Valletta as the European Capital of Culture in 2018 offers the perfect scenario for hosting such an event.