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

12. THE BLESSED VIRGIN HIDES FROM EMISSARIES OF HEROD.




[November 28 ^th:] Today I saw the Blessed Virgin with the Infant Jesus and the maidservant leaving the cave for several hours. I saw that after coming out of the door she turned to the right under the projecting thatched roof, then took a few steps and hid herself in the side cave. This was the cave where the fountain of water sprang up at Christ's birth and was captured by Joseph. She remained four hours in this cave, but later she spent a few days there. Joseph had been there at dawn to make a few arrangements for her comfort. They were given an inner warning to go there, for today there came to the cave from Bethlehem some men, emissaries of Herod, I think, because of the rumor, spread abroad by the shepherds' talk, that some wonderful thing had happened there connected with a child. I saw these men exchanging a few remarks with St. Joseph, whom they met in front of the Cave of the Nativity in the company of the shepherds. When they saw how poor and simple he was, they left him with supercilious smiles. The Blessed Virgin remained with the Infant Jesus about four hours in the side-cave, and then returned to the Crib. The Cave of the Nativity is pleasantly situated and very quiet. No one comes here from Bethlehem, except the shepherds whose duties bring them here. In general no one in Bethlehem pays any attention to what happens out here, for owing to the many strangers there is a great press of people coming and going in the town. There is much buying and slaughtering of beasts, as many of the people present pay their taxes with beasts. There are also many heathen there, who work as servants.

[This evening Catherine Emmerich said suddenly in her sleep: Herod has had a pious man murdered who had an important post in the Temple. He invited him most warmly to visit him at Jericho and had him murdered on the way. He was opposed to Herod's pretensions regarding the Temple. In spite of Herod being accused of this murder, his power over the Temple increases.' She again insisted that Herod had appointed two of his natural sons to high places in the Temple; that these were Sadducees and that they betrayed to him everything that went on there.]











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