First United Methodist Church in Palatine will hold its annual Bethlehem Marketplace on Saturday, Dec. 7, from 10:00AM to 3:00PM. Our fellowship hall will be transformed into the thriving marketplace of Bethlehem at the time of Christ’s birth. You can experience the excitement of our lively market, featuring many ancient crafts: baskets, candles, clay, leather, spices, and others. But our marketplace is unique - guests don’t just buy the crafts, they actually make them themselves! Guests may buy bags of “Roman” coins ($6 or $9) and exchange these for the fun of creating many crafts found in first-century Bethlehem.
We also have an educational component to the program where children may earn a little surprise for proving their Bible-times knowledge after reading our various ‘culture posters’. The kids have fun learning while they enjoy the crafts.
Participants may also enjoy foods found in the Bible at our “Rachel’s Inn”. For a modest sum, feast on our perennially favorite lentil soup, flatbread and honey, grapes, apples, dates, cheese, hummus & pita chips, dried meat, dried fruit, and cookies.
The highlight of the day is our live nativity. Watch as the wise men enter the market seeking the newborn king. Listen as King Herod interrogates them for the baby’s whereabouts. Then follow the men as they search and then find the stable. Hear the wondrous story of the miraculous birth of Jesus and watch as the setting comes to life with visitors to see the baby Jesus. Then raise your voice to God, as everyone sings favorite hymns of joyous celebration.
Not only is this event a wonderful place to spend quality time together as a family, but it’s a great way to kick off the Christmas season in fellowship with people from throughout the community. Come join us!