And there went out a decree that all the world should be taxed.
Joseph went up with Mary, his espoused wife, being great with child.
There was no room for them in the inn.
And she brought forth her firstborn son . . . and laid him in a manger. . .
There were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field. . .
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them . . .
And the angel said, Fear not: I bring you good tidings of great joy.
For unto you is born this day a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
And the shepherds said, Let us go now even unto Bethlehem.
And they found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God.
Behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem.
We have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.
When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled.
He demanded of them where Christ should be born.
And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea.
And he said, Go and search diligently for the young child. . .
When they heard the king, they departed.
The star came nd stood over where the young child was.
They saw the young child, and fell down, and worshipped him.
They presented unto him gifts: gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
[Conclusion on Day 24:]
Shepherds in the fields nearby
And wise men from afar
Came to where the Christ child was
By following a star.
In Bethlehem on hay and straw
The baby Jesus lay,
And that was the beginning
Of our joyous Christmas Day/
HAPPY NEW YEAR
[The story above, based on biblical accounts of events surrounding the birth of the Christ child, was taken from an advent calendar published by Hallmark in 1968. The story lies day by day behind numbered doors which also correspond to the symbols of the story.]