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St.John the Baptist

St. John was the son of Zachariah and Elizabeth. He was an only child. The angel Gabriel foretold his birth to Zachariah. He did not believe the angel Gabriel and was struck speechless because of his doubt in the prophesy. His speech returned after the birth of St. John the Baptist when Zachariah named his son John as the angel Gabriel has instructed him to. St John the Baptist was born approximately six months before Jesus. He is believed to have lived as a hermit in the desert of Judea. At the age of thirty he began to preach on the banks of the River Jordan. St. John the Baptist spoke of evil times and encouraged men to do penance and be baptised. He predicted Jesus’ coming.

The Birth of John the Baptist

When Jesus went to the River Jordan to be baptised, all in God’s plan, John recognised him straight away as the Messiah that he often preached about. He said to Jesus, “It is I who should be baptised by you.” St. John the Baptist was beheaded by order of Herod Antipas, son of King Herod who tried to have the infant Jesus sought out and murdered when he was a baby. The Catholic community celebrates the feast day of St. John the Baptist on 24th June Read the bible passages about St. John the Baptist in the New Testament as told by the four gospel writers. Each passage is slightly different but the same message is conveyed – St. John the Baptised was sent to ‘prepare the way’.