Body and Blood of Christ
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    The name Bethlehem means, house of bread. St Jerome called it “the most sacred place in the world for us.” An olive grove on the road to Bethlehem
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    Bethlehem is eight km south of Jerusalem. The birthplace of David, who roamed its hills as a young shepherd caring for the family flocks until Samuel anointed him king. The prophet Micah announced that the promised Messiah would be of David’s line and be born in Bethlehem. Micah 5:2-3
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    Church of the Nativity. An archaeological survey indicates that the early town was in the area of the Church of the Nativity and the caves underneath were in use. Even today, many houses are built in front of caves.
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    Main Door. The first Church was dedicated in 339. The apse is directly above the cave of the Nativity. A larger Church was built in 529.
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    The Cistern
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    Entering the Nave
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  • Medieval-Entrance2
    Entrance to the Grotto. The Gospels make no mention of a cave but Justin Martyr writes c.A.D.155. “At the birth of the child in Bethlehem… Joseph put up in a cave near the village. While they were there Mary gave birth to Christ and laid him in a manger, this is where the wise men found him when they came from Arabia.” St Jerome took up residence in Bethlehem in 384. One of the caves in the grotto is identified as his study.
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    Entrance to the birth cave is from the sanctuary in the Basilica with a second entrance from the Franciscan Church.
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    The Birthplace of Jesus
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    Venerated as the place of the manger
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    Entrance/ exit. The original door was reduced in size to prevent looting.
  • Shepherds'-Fields-near-Beth
    Shepherds Fields. “In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for see - I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger." And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favours!" Luke 2:8-14




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