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Sunday, February 2, 2020

Feast of the Presentation of Jesus

Mary and Joseph took the baby Jesus to the temple to present him to the Lord as the law said. They were not expecting anything unusual but Simeon was there and the Holy Spirit had revealed to him that he would not see death before he had seen the Christ. So, he is in the temple when Mary and Joseph came and he took the child in his arms and said, "Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in the sight of all the peoples: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory for your people Israel."

Imagine the amazement of Mary and Joseph. But Simeon also said to Mary, "Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted -- and you yourself a sword will pierce--so that thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."

Mary must have kept all these words and pondered them in her heart. Then, Anna, a prophetess advanced in years who never left the temple, came forward and "gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were awaiting the redemption of Israel."

There is much to reflect on in today's Gospel. Jesus was fully human and therefore was a helpless baby in the arms of Mary, but God revealed that Jesus was much more! Mary and Joseph returned to Nazareth, a small village to raise Jesus.

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