The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary
by Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich
12. JUTTAH. ELIZABETH TAKES JOHN INTO THE WILDERNESS.
[March 6 ^th:] Zechariah and Elizabeth had also received a message
warning them of imminent danger. I think the Holy Family had sent them
a trusty messenger. I saw Elizabeth taking the little John to a very
hidden place in the wilderness, a few hours' distance from Hebron.
 Zechariah accompanied them for only a part of the way, to a place
where they crossed a small stream on a wooden beam. He then left them
and went towards Nazareth by the way which Mary followed when she
visited Elizabeth. I saw him on his journey to Nazareth, where he is
probably going to obtain further details from Anna. Many of the friends
of the Holy Family there are much distressed at their departure. Little
John had nothing on but a lamb's skin; although scarcely eighteen
months old, he was sure on his feet and could run and jump about. Even
at that age he had a little white stick in his hand, which he treated
as a plaything. One must not think of his wilderness as a great desert
of waste sand, but rather as a desolate place with rocks, caves, and
ravines, where bushes and wild fruits and berries grew. Elizabeth took
the little John into a cave in which Mary Magdalen lived for some time
after Jesus' death. I cannot remember how long Elizabeth remained here
hidden with her young child, but it was probably only until the alarm
about Herod's persecution had subsided. She then returned to Juttah,
about two hours' distance away, for I saw her escaping again into the
wilderness with John when Herod summoned the mothers with their little
sons up to two years of age, which happened quite a year later.
[Catherine Emmerich, who had up to this point communicated pictures of
the Flight day by day, was here interrupted by illness and other
disturbances. On resuming her story a few days later she said:] I
cannot distinguish the days so clearly now, but will describe the
separate pictures of the Flight into Egypt as nearly as possible in the
order in which I remember seeing them.