Creative Christians from Kidlington, Oxfordshire reflected on the nativity story as they made a large crib for their church.

The Making Group from St Mary’s Church included a wise woman named Mildred among the characters they created. “We don’t know much about the wise men, and one of the group felt she wanted to make a wise woman,” said the Ven. David Meara, one of the group leaders.

“As people started to make the characters, which is quite a complex process, especially modelling the faces, they began to take on their own characteristics and personality. The people making them felt really engaged with the characters.

“Mary looks young, and the Bible says she was a young girl. Joseph looks a bit grumpy, as you would if you’d travelled a long way and been up all night.

“The process of making the figures brought home what an extraordinary event this must have been for Mary and yet she was obedient to the message of the angels.”