……..Comfort, O comfort my people,
….says your God.
……..Speak tenderly to Jerusalem,
I am black and comely, O ye daughters of Jerusalem,
……..Behold, I will do a new thing;
……..now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it?
……..I will even make a way in the wilderness,
……..and rivers in the desert.
In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary.
By night on my bed I sought him whom my soul loveth:
I sought him, but I found him not.
I will rise now, and go about the city
in the streets, and in the broad ways
I will seek him whom my soul loveth
And he came to her and said, ‘Greetings, favoured one! The Lord is with you.’ But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.
Who is this that cometh up from the wilderness,
leaning upon her beloved?
The angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus.
I slept, but my heart was awake.
Listen! my beloved is knocking
Mary said to the angel, ‘How can this be, since I am a virgin?’ The angel said to her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you;
Awake, O north wind;
and come, thou south;
blow upon my garden,
that the spices thereof may flow out.
And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.’
……..a bruised reed he will not break,
……..and a dimly burning wick he will not quench
the voice of the turtle-dove
is heard in our land
Then Mary said, ‘let it be.’
I am my beloved’s, and my beloved is mine.