A local church is working to give local families an idea of what the scene of Jesus of Nazareth’s birth was really like.

Paradise Hills United Methodist Church, 4700 Paradise Blvd. NW in Albuquerque, is hosting a live nativity scene from 5-8 p.m. Dec. 23. There’s no admission charge.

Jim Baun, a member of the church and of the live nativity organizing committee, said the event will include human actors and live animals, at least sheep and a mule. The owner of the animals will supervise them to ensure safety, he said.

Baun said the goal is to make the live nativity scene as realistic as possible so people can get a taste of what it was like.

Attendees can enjoy hot chocolate and cookies, as well.

Ample parking is available at the church, and motorists can enter from Paradise Boulevard.

This year is the first the church has created a live nativity scene, and Baun said organizers hope to make it an annual event.