THE FLIGHT INTO EGYPT (THE SECOND OF THE 7 SORROWS OF MARY)

"Arise, and take the young Child and His Mother, and flee into Egypt, and lie thou there until I bring thee word, for Herod will seek the young Child to destroy Him."- Matthew 2:13
I grieve for thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the anguish of thy most affectionate heart during the flight into Egypt and thy sojourn there. Dear Mother, by thy heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of generosity, especially toward the poor, and the gift of piety.
Hail Mary, etc.
*The Flight into Egypt and Return to Nazareth.
When all was fulfilled according to the Law concerning Jesus in the Temple in Jerusalem, and the wise men were already on the road to their home, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, "Arise, and take the young Child and His Mother, and flee into Egypt, and lie thou there until I bring thee word, for Herod will seek the young Child to destroy Him."
Joseph immediately arose, saddled his donkey, quickly gathered the necessary things, took the young Child and His Mother, and the same night went into Egypt. According to tradition, James, son of Joseph, accompanied them on this journey.
In the meantime, Herod impatiently awaited the return of the wise men. When the wise men did not return from Bethlehem, he concluded that the wise men, not finding a newborn king, were ashamed to return to Jerusalem. For the time being, Herod was tranquil.
But after forty days the news spread throughout Jerusalem that Mary had presented in the Temple Her newborn Son, and that the aged Simeon had come to the Temple to meet this Child and had prophesied that He was the Christ. Then, Herod realized that the wise men had figured out his evil intent and had purposely avoided returning to him. He was exceedingly angry.
Not knowing how to find the Christ Child, King Herod gave the disastrous order to kill all the children that were in Bethlehem and its surroundings from two years old and under. He hoped that among these children would be killed the Christ. Thus he calculated according to the time when he had diligently questioned the wise men. The soldiers sent by Herod killed 14,000 children. Everywhere were heard the howls and screams of the mothers whose crying for their children, innocent children, killed by the order of the brutal King would never have been comforted. They were the first martyrs to spill their blood for Christ.
Soon after this, Herod was punished for his cruelty. He came down with a terrible illness. His body rotted alive and was eaten by worms, and he died in terrible torment.
After the death of Herod, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in Egypt and said, "Arise, and take the young Child and His mother, and go into the land of Israel; for they are dead which sought the young Child’s life." Joseph did as he was told and took his family into the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus reigned in Judea in the place of Herod, his father, and that he was just as much cruel, Joseph was afraid to go there. Being warned of God in a dream, Joseph turned aside into the parts of Galilee, into his native city Nazareth. There Joseph dwelt with the child Jesus and His Mother.
The child Jesus grew and became strong in spirit and filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him. From the earliest years of His childhood, Jesus Christ exhibited unusual intelligence and remarkable sanctity in all His actions.
Note: See the Gospels of Matthew, 2:13-23 and Luke, 2:40.
THE FLIGHT INTO EGYPT
(From the Book :The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
by Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich

16. NIGHT TRAVEL. THE HOLY FAMILY STARTLES SNAKES AND FLYING LIZARDS.
[March 8 ^th:] I saw the Holy Family journeying in a bright starlit night through a sandy desert covered with low bushes. I felt as if I were traveling through it with them. It was dangerous because of the numbers of snakes which lay coiled up among the bushes in little hollows under the leaves. They crawled towards the path, hissing loudly and stretching out their necks towards the Holy Family, who, however, passed by in safety surrounded by light. I saw other evil beasts there with long black bodies, short legs, and wings like big fins. They shot over the ground as if they were flying, and their heads were fish-like in shape. I saw the Holy Family come to a fall in the ground like the edge of a sunken road; they meant to rest there behind some bushes.
I was alarmed for the Holy Family. The place was sinister, and I wanted to make a screen to protect them on the side left open, but a dreadful creature like a bear made his way in, and I was in terrible fear. Then there suddenly appeared to me a friend of mine, an old priest who had died lately. He was young and beautiful in form, and he seized the creature by the scruff of its neck and threw it out. I asked him how he came to be here, for surely he must be better off in his own place, to which he replied: I only wanted to help you, and shall not stay here long.' He told me more, adding that I should see him again.
17. MARA (?). AN INHOSPITABLE DESERT.
(The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
by Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich

The Holy Family always traveled a mile eastwards of the high road. The name of the last place they passed between Judea and the desert sounded very like Mara. It reminded me of Anna's home, but it was not the same place. The inhabitants here were rough and wild, and the Holy Family could obtain no assistance from them. After this they came into a great desert of sand. There was no path and nothing to show their direction, and they did not know what to do. After some time they saw a dark, gloomy mountain-ridge in front of them. The Holy Family were sorely distressed, and fell on their knees praying to God for help. A number of wild beasts then gathered round them, and at first it looked very dangerous; but these beasts were not at all evil, but looked at them in just the same friendly way as my confessor's old dog used to look at me when he came up to me. [159] I realized then that these beasts were sent to show them the way. They looked towards the mountain and ran in that direction and then back again, just like a dog does when he wants you to follow him somewhere. At last I saw the Holy Family follow these animals and pass over a mountain-ridge into a wild and lonely region.
19. THE WILDERNESS. SNAKES AND FLYING LIZARDS.
(The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
by Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich

After this I again saw the Holy Family journeying through a desert, and when they lost their way, I again saw various kinds of creeping beasts approach them, lizards with bats' wings and snakes, but they were not hostile and seemed only to want to show them the way. Later on, when they had lost every trace of their path and direction, I saw them guided by a very lovely miracle; on each side of the path the plant called the rose of Jericho appeared with its curling leaves surrounding the central flower and the upright stalk. They went up to it joyfully, and on reaching it they saw in the distance another plant of it spring up, and so throughout the whole desert. I saw, too, that it was revealed to the Blessed Virgin that in later times the people of the country would gather these flowers and sell them to passing strangers to gain their bread. (I saw this happening afterwards.) The name of the place sounded like Gase or Gose [? Gosen]. Then I saw them come to a place called by a name like Lepe or Lape [? Pelusium]. There was a lake there with ditches, canals, and high embankments. They crossed the water on a raft with a sort of big tub on it in which the donkey was put. Mary sat with her Child on a piece of timber. Two ugly, brown, half-naked men with flattened noses and protruding lips ferried them over. They passed only the outlying houses of this place, and the people here were so rough and unsympathetic that the travelers went on without speaking to anyone. I think that this was the first heathen town. They had been ten days in the Jewish country and ten days in the desert.
I now saw the Holy Family on Egyptian territory. They were in flat country, with green pastures here and there on which cattle were feeding. I saw trees to which idols had been fastened in the shape of infants wrapped in broad swaddling-bands inscribed with figures or letters. Here and there I saw people thick-set and fat, dressed like the cotton-spinners whom I once saw near the frontiers of the three kings. I saw these people hurrying to worship their idols. The Holy Family went into a shed; there were beasts in it, but these went out to make room for them. Their provisions had given out, and they had neither bread nor water. Nobody gave them anything, and Mary was hardly able to feed her Child. They did, indeed, endure every human misery. At last some shepherds came to water the beasts at a closed spring, and at Joseph's urgent request gave them a little water. Then I saw the Holy Family going through a wood, exhausted and helpless. On coming out of it they saw a tall, slender date palm with its fruit growing all together like a bunch of grapes at the very top of the tree. Mary went up to the tree with the Infant Jesus in her arms, and prayed, lifting the Child up to it; the tree bowed down its head to them, as if it were kneeling, so that they were able to pick all its fruit. [162] The tree remained in that position. I saw a rabble of people from the last town following the Holy Family, and I saw Mary distributing the fruit from the tree among the many naked children who were running after her. About a quarter of an hour from the first tree they came to an unusually big sycamore tree with a hollow trunk. They had got out of sight of the people who were following them, and hid in the tree so as to let them pass by. They spent the night here.
20. THE DESERT. A SPRING ARISES FROM MARY'S PRAYER.
From the Book "The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary" 
by Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich

Next day they continued through waste and sandy deserts, and I saw them sitting on a sand-hill quite exhausted, for they had no water with them. The Blessed Virgin prayed to God, and I saw an abundant spring of water gush forth at her side and run in streams on the ground. Joseph leveled a little sand-hill and made a basin for the water, digging a little channel to carry off the overflow. They refreshed themselves with the water and Mary washed the Infant Jesus. Joseph watered the donkey and filled the water-skin. I saw tortoises, and ugly creatures like big lizards coming to drink at the water. They did the Holy Family no harm, but looked at them in a friendly way. The stream of water flowed in a wide circle, disappearing again in the ground near its source. The space which it enclosed was wonderfully blessed: it soon became green and produced the most delicious balsam shrubs, which grew big enough to give refreshment to the Holy Family on their return from Egypt. Later it became famous as a balsam garden. A number of people came to settle there; amongst them, I think, the mother of the leprous child who had been healed in the robbers' den. Later I had visions of this place. A beautiful hedge of balsam shrubs surrounded the garden, in the middle of which were big fruit trees. Later a deep well was dug there, from which an abundant supply of water was drawn by a wheel turned by an ox. This water was mixed with the water from Mary's well so as to supply the whole garden. The water from the new well would have been harmful if used unmixed. It was shown me that the oxen who turned the wheel did no work from midday on Saturday till Monday morning.
* Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich (German: Anna Katharina Emmerick; 8 September 1774 – 9 February 1824) was a Roman Catholic Augustinian Canoness Regular of Windesheim, mystic, Marian visionary, ecstatic and stigmatist.
She was born in Flamschen, a farming community at Coesfeld, in the Diocese of Münster, Westphalia, Germany, and died at age 49 in Dülmen, where she had been a nun, and later become bedridden. Emmerich is notable for her visions on the life and passion of Jesus Christ, reputed to be revealed to her by the Blessed Virgin Mary under religious ecstasy.
During her bedridden years, a number of well-known figures were inspired to visit her. The poet Clemens Brentano interviewed her at length and wrote two books based on his notes of her visions. The authenticity of Brentano's writings has been questioned and critics have characterized the books as "conscious elaborations by a poet" and a "well-intentioned fraud" by Brentano.
Emmerich was beatified on 3 October 2004, by Pope John Paul II However, the Vatican focused on her own personal piety rather than the religious writings associated to her by Clemens Brentano. Her documents of postulation towards canonization is handled by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter.
photos:
1.)Flight into Egypt by Eugène Alexis Girardet
2.) Frederick Goodall RA The Flight into Egypt 1884, oil on canvas, 1922/3/1. Collection of the Sarjeant Gallery Te Whare o Rehua Whanganui.
3.) Rest on the Flight into Egypt 1879
Luc Olivier Merson (French, 1846–1920)

4.) The Flight into Egypt 1883 by Edwin Long 1829-1891. Joseph; Mary and Jesus enter Egypt as they flee the holy Land
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