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Mary and Child

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

4.5 AGITATION IN NATURE AND MANKIND AT MARY'S BIRTH.

At the time of Mary's birth I saw a great and joyful agitation in nature, in the animal world, in the hearts of all good men, and I heard the sound of sweet singing. Sinners, however, were overwhelmed by fear and sorrow. I saw, specially near Nazareth, but also in the rest of the Promised Land, many who were possessed break out at that time into violent ravings. They were hurled from side to side with loud cries, and the devils shrieked from within them, We must surrender, we must go out!'In Jerusalem I saw how the aged priest Simeon, who lived in the Temple, was startled at the moment of Mary's birth by loud shrieks coming from the madmen and those possessed of the devil, of whom many were shut up in a building in one of the streets on the Temple Hill. Simeon lived near them and was partly responsible for looking after them. About midnight I saw him go to the open space before the house of those possessed and inquire of one of them who lived nearest as to the cause of the loud cries with which everyone had been roused from their sleep. The man cried still louder that he must go out. Simeon opened the door; the possessed one rushed out, and Satan cried from within him: I must go out. We must all go out! A virgin has been born! There are so many angels on earth who torment us! We must now go out and may nevermore enter into men!' I saw Simeon praying fervently; the wretched man was flung back and forth on the open space, and I saw the devil go out of him. It gave me great pleasure to see the aged Simeon. I also saw the prophetess Anna and Noemi wakened and informed by visions of the birth of a chosen child. [Noemi was the sister of Lazarus' mother; she was in the Temple and later became Mary's teacher.] They met and told each other of what they had seen. I think they knew Anna, the Blessed Virgin's mother.

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