While Virgin Mary was lying in straw beside her son in the manger on the chilly night of December when he was born, she was too tired and weak to get up and keep the fire to keep her son warm. She was a stranger in the land and there was no one yet to help her with her miseries. The wind was raw and cold and fire was getting dull, this causing discomfort to the Holy Infant. Thus, Mary asked the oxen in the stable to help her and blow the embers with their breath. But they did not even stir from their place. Then, the poor mother pleaded with the ass to breathe upon the flame to make it brighter and warmer but the silly and lazy animal was so fast asleep that he did not even heard his name.
At last, a brave small Robin who was flying down south with his brothers heard the lady’s pleas and saw her and her son in great discomfiture and took pity on them and come through the window to help them. She flapped her wings till the flames rekindled and started burning brighter. Some of the sparks even leapt up and seared the creature’s breast but the Robin continued to serve baby Jesus bravely till the stable grew warmer and the Child slept softly. The thankful Lady blessed the Robin for her bravery and kindness and said that from that point of time, every Robin would have a breast of red as a reminder of the great Charity; it had done unselfishly for Baby Jesus.