Today as I was pondering on what to write for this weekly series, I came upon an intriguing idea in a book a recently acquired titled, Dictionary of Mary. In this dictionary, there is a small section that focuses on Marian Chronology. I found it fascinating when I read the presumed dates of Our Lady’s life in relation to Jesus Christ’s life, which is really the way one can look at her chronology. We also know that the chronology of both their lives is somewhat sparse in the New Testament, however, this chronology does help us in understanding the life of Jesus and Mary, even if it’s not complete.
I found the whole concept further intriguing because I think so many of us think that Our Lord was born in the Year 0 A.D., but in fact he was actually born in what we call the B.C. era or Before Christ (for obvious reasons I refuse to use the terms B.C.E – Before the Common Era and C.E. – Common Era). I urge you to remember that there were different calendars for centuries. Even at the time of Jesus different sects of Judaism had different calendars. For centuries the Julian calendar was the main calendar, but do to flaws, Pope Gregory XIII managed to change these flaws to create the calendar we are all familiar with today. If you are interested in the study, I would suggest you look it up online.
Here is the chronology as presented in the Dictionary of Mary –
23-20 B.C. – Birth of Mary to Ann and Joachim
20-17 B.C. – Presentation of Mary in the Temple
11-8 B.C. – Betrothal to Joseph [Mt 1:16; Lk 1:27]
7 B.C. – Annunciation to Christ’s Birth to Mary [Lk 1:26-38]; Mary Visitation of Elizabeth [Lk 1:39-56]; Mary found with Child [Mt. 1:18-25]
7-6 B.C. (some also think around 4 B.C.) – Birth of in Jesus Jerusalem [Lk 2:1-19]; Circumcision of Jesus at 8 days of age [Lk 2:21]; Purification of Mary after 40 days [Lk 2:22-24]; Prophecy of Simeon [Lk 2:25-35] and Anna [Lk 2:36-38]; Return to Nazareth [Lk 2:39].
6-4 B.C. – Adoration of the Magi (this is believed to have 2 years after because Herod orders that all the boys 2 years and under be killed); Flight into Egypt to save Jesus from Herod [Mt. 2:39]
4-? B.C. – Return to Nazareth after Herod’s death [Mt 2:19-23].
6 A.D. – Finding of Jesus in the Temple at Jerusalem [Lk 2:41-50]
6-? A.D. – Life of Mary and Joseph with Jesus at Nazareth [Lk 2:51]
27/28-30 A.D. – Mary at the Marriage Feast of Cana [Jn 2:1-11]; Mary with Jesus during His Public Life [Mt 12:46-50; Mk 3:31-35; Lk 8:19-21; Jn 2:2-13]; Jesus’ indirect praise of Mary of her faith [Lk 11:27-28]
30 A.D. – Mary at the Cross [Jn 19:25-27]; Mary with the Apostles in the Cenacle after Jesus’ Ascension [Acts 1:14]; Mary is assumed to heaven to join her Son.