The feast of the Presentation of the Lord only comes on Sunday every seven to eight years. It is a Solemnity which is the highest celebration we have. Originally, this feast was the Presentation of Mary. A woman who gave birth would have to go to the Temple for ritual washing. Many years ago, the Franciscans tied the two together and eventually this became the Presentation of the Lord which is the feast we celebrate today. The Presentation of the Lord is closely tied to Christmas. It occurs exactly 40 days after Jesus is born. It is a day we celebrate the gift God gave us in Jesus as our Messiah.
Our first reading today is from Malachi who is a prophet. Most prophets are not well liked. They tell the truth; and as a rule, human beings do not want to hear the truth. The leadership of the Jewish people now begin to move away from the belief that Jesus is the Messiah. As you can imagine, Malachi is not well liked. Our Gospel story today comes from Luke 2:22-40. Simeon is a very old man. He is not an official or a priest but he still prays every day. His prayer is that he will see the Messiah before he dies. When Joseph and Mary bring Jesus to the Temple, Simeon immediately recognizes Jesus as the Messiah and declares it clearly. Anna, a holy woman, also attests that Jesus is the Messiah.
This is a beautiful story showing how much God loves us. After all, he gives us his son, doesn’t he? Pray as often as you can that God will give you wisdom like Simeon’s and Anna’s wisdom. Pray that he will give you the ability to love as much as Jesus loves us and that the Holy Spirit will teach us what God wants for us.
Peace and All Good,