The small volcanic island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean is predominantly Roman Catholic. The?
GV Reunion Island, street scene (2 shots)
GV & SV Rain forest (2 shots)
CU Chameleon (5 shots)
GV Villages entering stable, site of nativity play (2 shots)
GV ZOOM IN congregation entering building
GV & CUs Choir singing
GV PAN Child in manager
CUs Three Kings (3 shots)
CUs Scenes from play (3 shots)
SV King holding silver pot
GV & SVs Child in manager (5 shots)
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Background: The small volcanic island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean is predominantly Roman Catholic. The picturesque island was occupied by the French in the 17th century. It occupies an area of 2,500 square kilometres and lies 175 kilometres south-west of Mauritius. As in many cultures, social and economic problems are put aside at Christmas time and people celebrate the religious festival which to many symbolises optimism and rebirth.
SYNOPSIS: Reunion Island is hot and humid at Christmas time. Its rain forests, lush green. It is not the sort of environment most the Western World associates with the Christmas season. But the islanders throw themselves into the festivities surrounding the religious celebrations of the birth of the Christian Messiah, Jesus Christ with great enthusiasm.
At the end of November, the rehearsals for the Christmas pageant, a recreation of Nativity, began.
The people of Reunion are plagued by what the Times newspaper of London called a social and economic malaise, arising from a high birth rate and high level of unemployment.
But the recreation of the scene in Bethlehem involves the community in re-enacting the story of Christmas. Complete with the child, the three Kings and choral accompaniment.
The nativity play will eventually be shown to all the islanders on local television around Christmas time.