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Pious Recreation n° 6 , 01r

J.M.J.T.

21 January in the year of grace 1896

The Flight Into Egypt

[Act 1]
[Scene 1]
The setting is the little house in Nazareth, Mary is alone in Joseph's workshop, with the Child Jesus on her knees. By her side is a basket of linen, her wheel, and her spindle.
 THE BLESSED VIRGIN 
Divine Child! How sweet it is for me to rock You to sleep in this dear little house in Nazareth!... Here, as in Bethlehem, the poverty is very great, but this refuge is more worthy of You than that abandoned stable. (The Blessed Virgin looks around her ten­derly). O blessed abode! What ineffable memories you bring to mind! Here the angel of the Lord visited the littlest, the last of all His creatures and asked for the unique grace of being able to serve the happy Mother of God. Here the Divine Word, the sec­ond Person of the Adorable Trinity, was made flesh by the workings of the Holy Spirit, and remained for nine months hid­den from mortal eves. (Looking at the baby Jesus). Then the world was unaware of Your Presence, O Divine Savior! Now I carry You in my arms, like a light burden, and Your creatures still do not recognize You... Since the shepherds and the Magi went away, no one thinks to come and adore You. Soon the springtime will be adorned with a thousand flowers, but none of them will equal the beauty of the Flower that blooms in Nazareth, far from hu­man sight. O divinely fragrant Flower! How does Your sweet perfume not. reveal Your Presence?...
[Scene 2]
  Saint Joseph enters, carrying his tools.
THE BLESSED VIRGIN, with a tone of gentle reproach.

Joseph, you've been away a long time, why do you work such long days?

 
 SAINT JOSEPH
 
O Mary! Let me spend my energy in die service of Jesus. It is for Him and for you that I work; this thought gives me cour­age and helps me to bear fatigue. And then, when I return

                            © Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

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RP6 01v

 

in the evening, one caress from Jesus, a single glance from you, make me forget the day's labors.

He wipes the sweat from his brow, then sits down by Alary and looks at the Child Jesus. The Blessed Virgin puts Him on Saint Joseph's knees; then his face takes on an expression of Celestial joy; he presses the Divine Child to his heart, kisses Him lovingly and. says to Him:

Little Child! How sweet Your smile is!... Is it really true that I, the poor carpenter Joseph, have the happiness of hold­ing in my arms the King of Heaven, the Savior of humanity?... Is it true that I have the sublime mission of being the foster father to Him whose presence satisfies the ardent seraphim and who nourishes even- creature? Is it true that I am the spouse of the Mother of God, the guardian of her virginity?...

O Mary ! Tell me, what is this profound mystery?... The Desired of the eternal hills, the Emmanuel for whom all the patriarchs have sighed, sits on my knees and He looks at me, His poor, unworthy servant.

THE BLESSED VIRGIN

Like you, Joseph, I am astonished to be able to press to my heart the Divine Child whose mother I am; I am astonished that a little milk is needful to Him who gives life to the world. (After a long, contemplative silence, Mary continues:) Soon Jesus will grow up and you will have to teach the Creator of the uni­verse how to work.... With you, He will earn His bread by the sweat of His adorable brow....

SAINT JOSEPH

What are you saving, Mary? Must Jesus become a poor workman like me? I'll never have the courage to see Him hear the reproaches I receive!...

Even today, the rich lord for whom I was working was not happy with my work and sent me away, telling me to seek my fortune elsewhere. After much searching and main rebuffs, I finally found enough work to last a whole month: I'll be able to do it here at home, a happiness for which I didn't dare to hope. Not to go away from Jesus and from you, what a consolation!... (Realizing that little Jesus is asleep, he lowers his voice:) The Di­me Child is sleeping; take up your Treasure, His bedtime has come. (He kisses Jesus on the forehead, then gives Him to Mary who takes Him respectfully.)

 

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

 
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RP6 02r

THE BLESSED VIRGIN, softly.

Joseph, may God bless your sleep, rest in peace beneath the gaze of Him whose heart is always watching.

 [Scene 3]

When Mary exits, Joseph goes to sleep; after a few moments of si­lence, the angel of the Lord appears to him in a dream; he sings to the tune of "La folle de la plage. — Flots bleus, vagues plaintives. " etc.

THE ANGEL

To the land of Egypt
You must quickly go.
Joseph, this very night,
Depart in silence.
 
Herod, in his rage,
wants to take away your Treasure.
From the Conqueror of death,
He wants to take away life.
 
Take the Mother and the Child,
Flee far from the tyrant. 
 

[Scene 4]

Saint Joseph gets up at once and taps lightly at the door of the little room where Mary is at rest.

 SAINT JOSEPH

Mary, wake up. for the life of Jesus is in danger.

THE BLESSED VIRGIN, entering with little Jesus.

Joseph, sleep in peace, no danger threatens the Divine Child. See how He is resting peacefully in my arms.

SAINT JOSEPH

Yes, in His sweet sleep, the King of the Heavens seems to be unaware of the message of one of His angels.... Still, He knows everything... O Man ! Why doesn't Jesus speak to you Himself? Why am I charged with delivering Heaven's orders to the '"Mother of my God?...

THE BLESSED VIRGIN

Don't be afraid. Speak. You are God's representative, the head of the family; tell me what the angel ordered you on be­half of the Lord. I am entirely ready to obey.

  

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

 

 

 

 

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RP6 02v

 SAINT JOSEPH

He is ordering us to flee into Egypt, because Herod is de­termined to put the Child to death. We must leave within the hour; tomorrow may be too late.... (He looks at Mary with a sad expression.)

THE BLESSED VIRGIN

Don't be troubled, Joseph. Since the day of the presentation of Jesus in the temple. I've been continually prepared to .r to the test, for the words of the holy elder Simeon I t 1 my soul with a- sword of sorrow. Already his prophecy is coming true; Jesus is suffering persecution before He is not old enough to defend Himself. I know that if He willed it, a word from His infant lips would suffice to wipe out all enemies; however, He chooses to flee from a weak mortal, He is the Prince of peace.... The Word made Child will not crush the half-broken reed, He will not extinguish a wick that is still burning. If He is rejected by those of His own heritage, that will not stop Him from giving His life for poor sinners who fail to recognize the time of His visit. Let us leave without fear, let us go sanctify an infidel shore with the presence of the Savior.

SAINT JOSEPH

Alas, how it costs me to expose you to the weariness and danger of so long and difficult a journey. How happy I'd be if I were permitted to take all the pain on myself... But I must resign myself to seeing you soon deprived of everything. Here we have the necessities; in Egypt, we will be reduced to the most extreme poverty.

THE BLESSED VIRGIN

The poverty we'll find in exile doesn't frighten me, since we will always have the Treasure that makes up the wealth of Heaven. His Divine Providence, which feeds the little birds -without forgetting a single one, will give us our daily bread.

[Scene 5]

After puking up Jus toots, Joseph exits with ''Jesus and Man: then the ANGELS sing to the tune of "Gondolières Vénitiennes'':
Ineffable mystery, 
Jesus, the King of Heaven, 
In exile on earth, 
Flees from a mortal!
To this God in swaddling clothes, 
Let us offer all our love,
May our white hosts
Come to form His court.

 

© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc

 

 

 

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RP6 03r

Let us cover Him with our wings
And with the loveliest flowers.
With our joyful singing,
Let us serenade the King of Heaven.
 
To comfort His Mother.
Mysteriously let us sing
Of the Savior's charms,
His grace and His sweetness.
 
Let us leave this shore.
Tonight let us flee,
very far from the storm,
Far from all noise.
 
Our shining Star,
Hidden beneath a veil,
Is the joy of the elect,
The Child Jesus.
 
The King of Heaven
Flees from a mortal.

 

[Act II]

THE CAVE OF THE THIEVES

[Scene 1] 

On the walls of the cavern hang weapons and the skins of wild beasts. On the floor are spread out a strange mix of jewels and rich candelabra, along with other objects of no value. A young woman, SUSANNA, rocks her son Dismas while singing to the tune of "Trouvère":
 
Once I was free from pain,
More content than a queen
And my life was joyous,
As I was happy for my son.
 
My son came into life
Like a rose in bloom.
But alas! The rose is withered,
And my flower is
Already dying!...
 
Ah! Never on this earth
Was a mother's sorrow
Equal to my sorrow.

[Scene 2]

The sound of a whistle alerts Susanna that the bandit troop is ap­proaching. She lens her sleeping child in a little cradle with great care, then she opens the door. ABRAMIN, the chief, enters first, followed by his companions, the old man TORCOL and the young IZARN. The three sing to the tune of '''Estudiantina."

 
© Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc
 
 

 

 

 

See the music score

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