Joseph’s Obedience

We know the narrative.  After the departure of the three Magi who visit the stable in Bethlehem  with Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh,  Joseph takes Mary and the new born infant and flee from Israel across a desert to Egypt.  But how do we read the unreadable subtext? How is an event that occurred two thousand years ago juxtaposed on events two thousand years later? It is of course the plight of the Holy Family two thousand years ago and the trauma of immigrants who are arriving in Europe, in the United Kingdom and countries around the world.

After the departure of the three kings, Joseph has a dream in which he is instructed to take Mary and the infant out of Israel into Egypt to escape the slaughter of male babies that Herod has ordered. Joseph has no hesitation. He is obedient to the messages he receives in his dreams. The Holy Family flee across a vast distance from Israel even crossing a desert into Egypt.