CROWDS attended a special church service held during a village’s Christmas light switch-on.
The service began in a packed Hope Parish Church with Mary and Joseph, the Angel Gabriel and the Roman centurion announcing the census.
Later the congregation followed Mary and Joseph outside to watch the rest of the Christmas story at the life-size crib followed by the switching on of the Christmas lights outside the Red Lion Inn.
Church rector, the Rev Adam Pawley, said: “This year’s service went well and we had more people turn out than ever before. There was a good reaction from everybody and it was a nice way to show that Christmas has started.
“The idea of the whole thing is to help remember that Christmas is a time not about television ads and that sort of thing, it’s to show the true meaning of Christmas. It’s to show that Christmas starts with Christ.”
Mr Pawley said he wanted to thank a range of people who helped with the big switch-on.
“I would like to thank Park in the Past for providing the Roman Soldier costume, Hope Community Council for providing the lights, and Little Jobs who put together the crib and the stars on the tower.
“Our nativity crib figures were made by children from Abermorddu CP and Ysgol Estyn, Hope Beavers and Brownies, and the Boys and Girls Brigades along with other uniform groups, so thank you to all of them.”
Carol singing on the night was accompanied by The Strictly Saxes Ensemble.
The lights will be kept on until January 6, 2017, which marks the Epiphany, one of the oldest Christian feasts. The lights can be seen outside Hope Church, the Red Lion Inn and also the White Lion Inn in Hope.
The church is also looking forward to its ‘Stable Trail’ from 2pm to 4pm on December 10.
The church will be turned into a nativity grotto and will include a range of crafts and activities and is a chance for people to learn about the nativity.