Friday, 31 January 2014
Feast of the Presentation of the Lord
This weekend (February 2nd), the church celebrates the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord which occurs forty (40) days after Christmas Day and it is often referred to as the Candlemas day since, as you may have noticed, there is a blessing and procession with candles.
According to the Roman Rite, this weekend marks the definite end to the Christmas season as it is practiced in the European region however, in modern times, since some has designated the Feast of the Epiphany or the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord as the end of the Christmas season.
If we listen to the readings of this weekend, we come to a realization that the Lord has sent someone before him to prepare a way for him. That person, whom the Lord has sent as we know is St. John the Baptist since John was born six months prior to the birth of Jesus.
Now, as the Law of Moses was declared, every first born-male must be consecrated to the Lord as such Mary and Joseph were fulfilling this Law. During Jesus' time in the temple, faithful servants of God such as Simeon who had been waiting for the Lord and was assured by God that he would not see death until he has seen the Lord Jesus Christ himself and Anna among others all went and blessed the Lord. It is on this feast (in the West), that the Law of purification for women who had given birth was declared in the Law of Moses.
As we will witness during our weekend masses, we shall engage ourselves in a procession with candles and this is to symbolize Jesus Christ as the 'light of the World'.