Published on December 1, 2021 by Holly Gainer  

A revival of The Star of Bethlehem, the popular show featured in Samford University’s Christenberry Planetarium, will return to campus Dec. 2-4. The event is free and open to the public.

The Star of Bethlehem examines the Gospel of Matthew which tells the story of the wise men seeing the star of Bethlehem and how it guided them to Jesus Christ. Along with the biblical story, the show will also consider potential scientific explanations for the physical phenomena of the famous star.

“The goal is not to present an explanation, because there is no historical proof that the star existed at all. This presentation is dedicated only to suggesting a narrative in the planetarium that communicates the star as a symbol with a function in the Gospel - a symbol of the deification of Jesus Christ,” said Don Olive, director of the Christenberry Planetarium. “Thinking about scientific explanations does not diminish the spiritual significance and importance of the biblical story, but it's fun to theorize about how God can deliver a sign to the magi, King Herod, the people of Israel, and ultimately to all of humanity.”

The performance was created by and stars Olive, as well as students Caroline Hood, Nolan Waldschmidt and Addie Pace.

The Christenberry Planetarium is on Samford’s campus, which is located at 800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham, Alabama, 35229.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.