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The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary
by Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich

20. THE HOLY THREE KINGS GO TO BETHLEHEM. THEY REST BY A SPRING.




I saw the kings and their train moving southwards out of the city gate. A crowd of people followed them as far as a brook outside the walls, and then, turned back. After crossing the stream, the kings made a short halt to look for their star. When they saw it they broke into cries of joy, and went on their journey, singing their sweet songs. The star did not lead them by the direct road to Bethlehem, but by a westerly detour. They passed by a little town I know well, and towards midday I saw them stop in a pleasant place near a little village behind the town. A spring of water burst forth before their eyes, at which they were overjoyed. They dismounted and hollowed out a basin round the spring, surrounding it with clean sand, stones, and turf. They stayed several hours here, watering and feeding their beasts, and refreshing themselves with food; for in Jerusalem they had been too disturbed and anxious to rest. In later years I saw Our Lord stopping sometimes by this spring with His disciples and teaching there.

The star, which at night shone like a ball of fire, now looked like the moon in daylight. It was not a perfect round, but had as it were a jagged edge; I often saw it hidden by clouds.

The direct road from Jerusalem to Bethlehem was full of travelers with donkeys and baggage, probably returning home from Bethlehem after the taxation, or going to the market or the Temple in Jerusalem. The way taken by the kings was very quiet, and no doubt God led them by it so that they should not cause too much sensation and should not arrive in Bethlehem before the evening. When the sun was already low, I saw them starting off again. They traveled in the same order as when they first met. Mensor, the brownish one and the youngest, went first; then came Seir, the dark-brown one; and then Theokeno, the white-skinned one and the eldest.











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