RNS photo public domain courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Did Isaiah really predict the Virgin birth?

(RNS) A new Catholic translation of the Bible tweaks an Old Testament text — Isaiah 7:14 — that many Christians consider a prophecy about Jesus’ birth. So, why did they alter a 2,745-year-old prophecy, and does it change what the church teaches about Jesus’ virgin birth? By Daniel Burke.

RNS photo courtesy www.cattoliciromani.com [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Christmas’ missing icon: Mary breastfeeding Jesus

(RNS) At its heartwarming core, Christmas is the story of a tender relationship between a new mother and her newborn child. Yet all the familiar images associated with the holy family are missing one obvious element: a breast-feeding infant. And therein lies a tale. By David Gibson.

RNS file photo by Nick Crettier / National 
Shrine of the Immaculate Conception

Colm Toibin’s Virgin Mary is far from meek and mild

(RNS) The traditional Christmas image of the Virgin Mary — silent, obedient, observant — has cemented a potent ideal in the Western imagination. Now the masterful Irish writer Colm Toibin puts a jackhammer to the cozy, safe, Christmas-card version in “The Testament of Mary.'' By Karen Long.