The Nativity of Mary

Joseph_and_Mary_arrive_at_BethlehemToday, the Catholic Church celebrates Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. TheĀ  Canon of Scripture does not record Mary’s birth. The earliest known account of Mary’s birth is found in the Protoevangelium of James (5:2), an non-biblical text from the late second century, with her parents known as Saint Anne and Saint Joachim. The book works its way to being an infancy gospel telling of the miraculous conception of the Virgin Mary, her upbringing and marriage to Joseph, the journey of the holy couple to Bethlehem, the birth of Jesus, and events immediately following.

The feast day, September 8, is selected as being 9 months after the celebration of the Immaculate Conception (Dec 8). The first known celebration of the feast dates to the 7th century in the West and perhaps a century earlier in the East. Continue reading