The Passionists' Compassion

Mary, the Mother of Jesus

 

Visit of the Magi

Saint Matthew, however, describes less tranquil circumstances following the birth of Christ. When Jesus was born in Bethlehem, Magi from the east arrived to pay him homage, guided by a star. Seeking information of the child's whereabouts from King Herod, they were directed to Bethlehem, where they found Jesus with Mary his mother.

Magi
Three Magi - watercolor by F. Smallfield

They offered gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. Then, warned of Herod's purpose to kill the child, they departed quickly for their own country by another way.

The Escape to Egypt

"Rise, take the child and his mother," the angel says to Joseph. "Flee to Egypt and stay there till I tell you."

escape to Egypt
Escape into Egypt - Fabriano

Safe in Mary's arms, Jesus is taken into Egypt where he escapes Herod's massacre of the innocent children of Bethlehem. When, at the angel's command, the child returns to his own land, he has relived the ancient journey of Israel -- the Exodus.

Both Matthew and Luke suddenly end their accounts of Jesus' early days when he settles with his family at Nazareth. Except for St. Luke's story of the pilgrimage of the boy Jesus to Jerusalem, the Gospels are silent about Jesus and Mary until his public life begins.

 

missing child