The latest surprise in Bishop Auckland Town Team’s Advent Windows programme, was the unveiling of an African Angel Gabriel by Cllr Joy Allen, Mayor of Bishop Auckland at Morrisons Superstore on Sunday 15th December.
The model makers from Wear Valley Christian Centre used a photograph to guide them of Zimbabwean Chris Mutumbwa who lives in Ramshaw and was delighted to be present at the opening.
Advent Windows Coordinator David Pott said: “We deliberately chose Chris because we wanted to have Gabriel welcoming people and beckoning them to come in to see our special alterNATIVITY scene when it is set up at the chapel in Auckland Castle on Christmas Eve. For now, he’s beckoning folk in to do their Christmas shopping in Morrisons! Also Jesus was born in a country that was at the crossroads of civilisation where Africa, Asia and Europe meet, so it’s high time our picture of the first nativity reflects that diversity.”
Cllr Joy Allen commented; “This year’s advent windows theme has been really special and has galvanised schools, colleges, churches and community groups who have worked so hard to create amazing installations like this wonderful representation of Angel Gabriel. Chris has obviously inspired the Christian Fellowship artists who have not only encapsulated his image perfectly but they have captured his joyous personality too.”
The model of Gabriel along with 23 other life-size models will be paraded through the streets of Bishop Auckland on Christmas Eve before being assembled into the alterNATIVITY scene at St Peter’s Chapel in Auckland Castle. The parade begins at the Stan Laurel statue on the junction of Princes Street and Newgate Street at 10:30am and will finish at St Peter’s Chapel at 11:30am where the Bishop of Durham will unveil the last model of the infant Jesus.
The project is funded by Northern Heartlands through County Durham Community Foundation and other generous donors and is also supported by The Auckland Project.
For more information contact David Pott on 07932 790525 or email email@example.com