It was a dramatic occasion this morning, the Feast of St. Thomas Becket, for there was lightning and thunder, accompanied with a dramatic rain-fall. Nature was acting out what it was created to do.


This morning, as I reflect on the Feast of the Holy Family that we will celebrate this coming Sunday, it can be seen that Mary, the Mother of God and St. Joseph and Simeon and Anna acted out their call from God the Father, to obey the law and present Jesus in the Temple.


Simeon and Anna were in the Temple, also obeying the will of the Father to welcome the Son of God. Jesus, in the arms of his Mother, together with St. Joseph carrying two pigeons (or turtle doves) came to present their Son, as the law required, as the Father required. The Trinity was present, the Father, the Son and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

It was a dramatic and momentous occasion.  For, “it was… the first encounter within the history of the people, a meeting between the young and the old: the young were Mary and Joseph with their infant son and the old were Simeon and Anna, two people who often went to the Temple.[1]

Simeon is full of joy.  Full of joy, because he has encountered what has been promised to him, that he would not die before he had seen the Messiah.[2]

My eyes have seen your salvation, which you display for all the people to see. Here is the light you will reveal to the nations, and the glory of your people Israel”.[3]


"Anna, is eighty-four-years old and this number, which is the result of 7×12, has a clear symbolic meaning: means perfection, while 12 represents the people of Israel. Anna is therefore the “woman–Israel–who,” having accomplished her mission, gives the world the expected messiah."[4]


Anna, the other person on the scene, was of the “tribe of Asher, the smallest, the most insignificant of all the tribes of Israel. The reason why Luke points out that Anna belongs to this tribe is to show, once again, that the poor are better prepared to recognize Jesus as the Saviour.[5]


The question is, are you prepared to recognize the Saviour in all the occasions of your life? Do you choose to bask in the light of the nations, or hide in the shadows?


 Enter, the Temple, the temple of your heart, "seek the Lord while he still may be found."[6]


Sr. Rosaleen Shaw OP




[1] Pope Francis, Homily for the Feast of the Presentation, 2nd February 2014

[2] Cf. Lk. 2:26

[3] Lk. 2: 30-32


[5] Ibid.

[6] Is. 55:6

Loading Conversation