1Now it happened that at this time Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be made ofthe whole inhabited world. 2This census -- the first -- took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria, 3and everyone went to be registered, each to his own town. 4So Joseph set out from the town of Nazareth in Galilee for Judaea, to David's town cal ed Bethlehem,since he was of David's House and line, 5in order to be registered together with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. 6Now it happened that, while they were there, the time came for her to have her child, 7and she gave birth to a son, her first-born. She wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in amanger because there was no room for them in the living-space. 8In the countryside close by there were shepherds out in the fields keeping guard over their sheep duringthe watches of the night. 9An angel of the Lord stood over them and the glory of the Lord shone round them. They were terrified, 10but the angel said, 'Do not be afraid. Look, I bring you news of great joy, a joy to be shared by thewhole people. 11Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12And here is a sign for you: you wil find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.' 13And all at once with the angel there was a great throng of the hosts of heaven, praising God with thewords: 14Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace for those he favours. 15Now it happened that when the angels had gone from them into heaven, the shepherds said to oneanother, 'Let us go to Bethlehem and see this event which the Lord has made known to us.' 16So they hurried away and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. 17When they saw the child they repeated what they had been told about him, 18and everyone who heard it was astonished at what the shepherds said to them. 19As for Mary, she treasured all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20And the shepherds went back glorifying and praising God for al they had heard and seen, just as theyhad been told. 21When the eighth day came and the child was to be circumcised, they gave him the name Jesus, thename the angel had given him before his conception. 22And when the day came for them to be purified in keeping with the Law of Moses, they took him up toJerusalem to present him to the Lord- 23observing what is written in the Law of the Lord: Every first-born male must be consecrated to theLord- 24and also to offer in sacrifice, in accordance with what is prescribed in the Law of the Lord, a pair ofturtledoves or two young pigeons. 25Now in Jerusalem there was a man named Simeon. He was an upright and devout man; he lookedforward to the restoration of Israel and the Holy Spirit rested on him. 26It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death until he had set eyes on theChrist of the Lord. 27Prompted by the Spirit he came to the Temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to dofor him what the Law required, 28he took him into his arms and blessed God; and he said: 29Now, Master, you are letting your servant go in peace as you promised; 30for my eyes have seen the salvation 31which you have made ready in the sight of the nations; 32a light of revelation for the gentiles and glory for your people Israel. 33As the child's father and mother were wondering at the things that were being said about him, 34Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, 'Look, he is destined for the fal and for the rise ofmany in Israel, destined to be a sign that is opposed- 35and a sword wil pierce your soul too -- so that the secret thoughts of many may be laid bare.' 36There was a prophetess, too, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was wel on inyears. Her days of girlhood over, she had been married for seven years 37before becoming a widow. She was now eighty-four years old and never left the Temple, serving Godnight and day with fasting and prayer. 38She came up just at that moment and began to praise God; and she spoke of the child to al wholooked forward to the deliverance of Jerusalem. 39When they had done everything the Law of the Lord required, they went back to Galilee, to their owntown of Nazareth. 40And as the child grew to maturity, he was filled with wisdom; and God's favour was with him. 41Every year his parents used to go to Jerusalem for the feast of the Passover. 42When he was twelve years old, they went up for the feast as usual. 43When the days of the feast were over and they set off home, the boy Jesus stayed behind inJerusalem without his parents knowing it. 44They assumed he was somewhere in the party, and it was only after a day's journey that they went tolook for him among their relations and acquaintances. 45When they failed to find him they went back to Jerusalem looking for him everywhere. 46It happened that, three days later, they found him in the Temple, sitting among the teachers, listeningto them, and asking them questions; 47and all those who heard him were astounded at his intel igence and his replies. 48They were overcome when they saw him, and his mother said to him, 'My child, why have you donethis to us? See how worried your father and I have been, looking for you.' 49He replied, 'Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?' 50But they did not understand what he meant. 51He went down with them then and came to Nazareth and lived under their authority. His mother storedup al these things in her heart. 52And Jesus increased in wisdom, in stature, and in favour with God and with people.
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