Dear God, open a door for my message, so that I may proclaim the mystery of Christ. I pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Colossians 4:3-4

R4C

R4C
Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You. ~ Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You. ~ Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You.
Psalm 19:14, May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Monday, 27 January 2014

The Presentation of the Lord (Feast) ~ 2014

Today on 2 February, we Christians recall and acknowledge the Lord’s entry into the Temple, the house of his Father, for the first time.


Forty days after the birth of Jesus at Christmas, we observe and celebrate the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord on 2 February. On this day in obedience Mary and Joseph with the infant Jesus went to the Temple at Jerusalem to offer sacrifice, both on behalf of Mary and on behalf of Jesus as a first-born male in accordance with Mosaic law. It was Jewish belief that, because of the bleeding, a mother was ritually unclean after giving birth and hence was in need of ritual purification. On giving birth to a son, a Jewish woman would be in semi-seclusion for 40 days (in the case of a girl, the period was longer). At the end of that period, the mother would then, in the case of her first-born, present him to the Lord in acknowledgement of his being source of all life.

Christ the Lord, 
a light to illuminate the Gentiles 
and a glory for His people Israel.

Inspired the words of the canticle "a light to the revelation of the Gentiles", the custom of blessing candles is done on the Feast of the Presentation. The candles were then lit, and a procession took place through church while the Canticle of Simeon was sung. Due to this the feast is also known as the Candlemas. 

Let us all hasten to meet Christ and be eager to join the procession and to carry a light. Our lighted candles are a sign of the divine splendour of the one who comes to expel the dark shadows of evil and to make the whole universe radiant with the brilliance of his eternal light. Our candles also symbolises how bright our souls should be when we go to meet Christ. The Mother of God, the most pure Virgin, carried the true light in her arms and brought him to those who lay in darkness. We too should carry a light for all to see and reflect the radiance of the true light as we hasten to meet him. The true light has come, the light that enlightens every man who is born into this world. Let all of us, my brethren, be enlightened and made radiant by this light. Let all of us share in its splendour, and be so filled with it that no one remains in the darkness. Let us be shining ourselves as we go together to meet and to receive with the aged Simeon the light whose brilliance is eternal. Rejoicing with Simeon, let us sing a hymn of thanksgiving to God, the Father of the light, who sent the true light to dispel the darkness and to give us all a share in his splendour. Through Simeon’s eyes we too have seen the salvation of God which he prepared for all the nations and revealed as the glory of the new Israel, which is ourselves. As Simeon was released from the bonds of this life when he had seen Christ, so we too were at once freed from our old state of sinfulness. By faith we too embraced Christ, the salvation of God the Father, as he came to us from Bethlehem. Gentiles before, we have now become the people of God.

In Pope John Paul II taught's ,‘Simeon's words seem like a second Annunciation to Mary, for they tell her of the actual historical situation in which the Son is to accomplish his mission, namely, in misunderstanding and sorrow.’ (Redemptoris Mater, n16) The archangel’s announcement was a fount of incredible joy because it pertained to Jesus’ messianic royalty and the supernatural character of His virginal conception.


Almighty ever-living God, we humbly implore your majesty that, just as your Only Begotten Son was presented on this day in the Temple in the substance of our flesh, so, by your grace, we may be presented to you with minds made pure. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. AMEN.


Sunday, 2 February, 2014
The Presentation of the Lord (Feast)


Reading 1
Malachi 3: 1 - 4

1"Behold, I send my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant in whom you delight, behold, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts.
2But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears? "For he is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap;
3he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, till they present right offerings to the LORD.
4Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the LORD as in the days of old and as in former years.

Psalm
Psalms 24: 7 - 10

7Lift up your heads, O gates! and be lifted up, O ancient doors! that the King of glory may come in.
8Who is the King of glory? The LORD, strong and mighty, the LORD, mighty in battle!
9Lift up your heads, O gates! and be lifted up, O ancient doors! that the King of glory may come in.
10Who is this King of glory? The LORD of hosts, he is the King of glory! [Selah]

Reading 2
Hebrews 2: 14 - 18

14Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same nature, that through death he might destroy him who has the power of death, that is, the devil,
15and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong bondage.
16For surely it is not with angels that he is concerned but with the descendants of Abraham.
17Therefore he had to be made like his brethren in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make expiation for the sins of the people.
18For because he himself has suffered and been tempted, he is able to help those who are tempted.

Gospel
Luke 2: 22 - 40

22And when the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord
23(as it is written in the law of the Lord, "Every male that opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord")
24and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, "a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons."
25Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.
26And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ.
27And inspired by the Spirit he came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the law,
28he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said,
29"Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word;
30for mine eyes have seen thy salvation
31which thou hast prepared in the presence of all peoples,
32a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to thy people Israel."
33And his father and his mother marveled at what was said about him;
34and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, "Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is spoken against
35(and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed."
36And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phan'u-el, of the tribe of Asher; she was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years from her virginity,
37and as a widow till she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day.
38And coming up at that very hour she gave thanks to God, and spoke of him to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.
39And when they had performed everything according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city, Nazareth.
40And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favor of God was upon him.

Or
Luke 2: 22 - 32

22And when the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord
23(as it is written in the law of the Lord, "Every male that opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord")
24and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, "a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons."
25Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.
26And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ.
27And inspired by the Spirit he came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the law,
28he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said,
29"Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word;
30for mine eyes have seen thy salvation
31which thou hast prepared in the presence of all peoples,
32a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to thy people Israel."





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