SLIGO - Pastor Brock Beveridge is quick to point out the large diorama of "The City of Jerusalem" isn't perfectly actuate, but it is pretty close. The scene includes the temple on the mount which was destroyed by the Romans.
The diorama of the holy city is about six-feet by 10-feet, and it is one of several in the Sligo United Methodist Church along Penn Street.
Other displays include The Last Supper, The Entry to Jerusalem and The Sermon of the Mount.
The figurines in the sets are about five-inches high.
The church recently acquired the sets from an estate sale.
"They belonged to Rosalie and Dan Brown," explained Beveridge. "They lived in Worthington."
Beveridge said it was chance meeting with the Browns on a bus tour in Europe that led to a long friendship.
"They were looking for some younger friends," Beveridge recalled with a chuckle. "Their older friends were dying off."
By coincidence, Rosalie Brown once served as an interim pastor at the Sligo Presbyterian Church.
"There are people around who will remember them," said Beveridge.
When the Browns passed away, the dioramas didn't sell at the estate sale. The size of the collection, including all of the storage boxes, might have deterred buyers. The Sligo Methodist Church then acquired the sets.
The figurines, the building and the animals are made by the Fontanini company.
Beveridge, Madelyn Sherman and other members of the church have the dioramas set up for public viewing during the upcoming "Home for the Holidays" festival in Sligo.
The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nov. 4, 5 and 6 through Sligo.
The Methodist church will also offer a wide variety of homemade soups, sandwiches and desserts all day on Nov. 4 and 5 and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 6.
Sherman said the historical biblical landmarks display will remain set up for a few weeks and appointments can be made for other viewings by calling the church at 814-473-3262.
Other activities during the three-day event include Santa's Snack Shack and at least 12 crafters at the Sligo Recreation Center; soup and sandwich sales at the Sligo Presbyterian Church; soup and other food sales and gently used Christmas items for sale at Grace Community Church in Curllsville and sales at private crafters' shops in Sligo and Rimersburg.
For more information about the events, please call 814-745-2074 or 814-745-2100.