Getting Real About Christmas

Let’s get real: We don’t know when or where Jesus was born. But we all have the image of the Holy Family in a cave or shed-type structure on the outskirts of an insignificant town called Bethlehem.

If Jesus was born in Bethlehem, we have a very pregnant young woman and her new husband traveling to his hometown. That means long walks and/or very uncomfortable donkey rides. Donkeys are great for hauling but not so much for riding because their backs are so wide. She wouldn’t have had her woman kin with her, leaving her without much of a support system at a very vulnerable time.

She gives birth in what can be described as a shed or cave. It offered some safety and protection from the elements, but it was far from clean and comfortable. Animals would have provided warmth but also unpleasant smells and potential aggression toward the humans who are sharing their space.

Source: Global Sisters Report

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