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ANF08. The Twelve Patriarchs, Excerpts and Epistles, The Clementia, Apocrypha, Decretals, Memoirs of Edessa and Syriac Documents, Remains of the First
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The Gospel of the Nativity of Mary.

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Chapter 1.

The blessed and glorious ever-virgin Mary, sprung from the royal stock and family of David, born in the city of Nazareth, was brought up at Jerusalem in the temple of the Lord.  Her father was named Joachim, and her mother Anna.  Her father’s house was from Galilee and the city of Nazareth, but her mother’s family from Bethlehem.  Their life was guileless and right before the Lord, and irreproachable and pious before men.  For they divided all their substance into three parts.  One part they spent upon the temple and the temple servants; another they distributed to strangers and the poor; the third they reserved, for themselves and the necessities of their family.  Thus, dear to God, kind to men, for about twenty years they lived in their own house, a chaste married life, without having any children.  Nevertheless they vowed that, should the Lord happen to give them offspring, they would deliver it to the service of the Lord; on which account also they used to visit the temple of the Lord at each of the feasts during the year.

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