Meditation on the Birth of Christ
Before Each Hail Mary
1. Herod, placed in
power by Caesar Augustus, ordered a census of the Jewish People and each had to
register in the town of his birth. Joseph was born in
2. They were forced
into staying in a cave that was used for the sheep and cattle. Joseph used his
talent as a screen maker to divide the cave into rooms and gave the back room
to Mary. In the roof of this back room was an opening to let the smoke escape
and allow fresh air in. The cave was in the side of a hill just outside the
3. Meanwhile, far
off, three different Kings from three different nations, believed there would
be a star to announce a future King. All three of these kings observed this
star. Unbeknownst to each other, they each put together a large caravan of
servants, family, camels, horses, and livestock to make the long journey
following the star. They met together just outside of
4. The time came for the birth of Jesus. Light filled the room where Mary sat on Her knees in prayer through the small hole in the roof. The fire was nothing but cinders, but the room was warm on the cold night. Suddenly the child passed through Her stomach and into Her arms without any pain whatsoever. The Child opened His eyes and smiled at Her but did not cry. For the first time in history a human being was looked into the face of God. Mary contemplated and worshipped the child in Her arms. In time Joseph came in and knelt down to worship the newly born Christ child. Behind him came some animals. They also knelt down to worship the God made man.
5. In the meantime, an Angel appeared to some shepherds watching their flock and the light from the Angel filled the hills around them.
“Fear not for behold I bring you tidings of great joy, that
will be to all the people. For this day is born to you a Savior, who is the
Christ the Lord, in the city of
Suddenly a multitude of Angels appeared singing: “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to all men of good will.”
The shepherds went to the cave to worship God in the manger
and then went away spreading the word thoughout
6. The three wise kings followed the rays of the star right to the cave. The three caravans of the kings amounted to thousands of people, camels, horses and cattle. The kings went in to worship the child, and their servants set up tents and tied up the livestock. No longer was the birth a secret but was the talk of the entire city and the surrounding lands.
7. The kings bowed down and worshipped the Child and offered gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. An Angel appeared to the them and they were told not to go back to inform Herod, so they returned to their own counties by a different route so they could avoid Herod.
8. However, it was no
longer safe for Jesus, Mary and Joseph. They had to leave
9. The Holy Family would escape the rage of Herod but not the Holy Innocents. In time Herod would kill thousands of the first born children of the Jewish people. They would become the first martyrs of the Church.
10. Mary, holding the Christ-child and sitting on a donkey
with Joseph walking beside would be the lot of the holiest family on earth for
the next three months as they traveled through Judea and into