November 21, 2019 – Feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Today, we celebrate the feast of the Presentation of Mary to the Temple. This feast is not found in the bible but in a scripture called the Protoevangelium of James. So, it means that this feast actually, has no historical basis. However, why do we celebrate it? Why is it important for the Church?
Even though this is not an historical event, but this feast itself is spiritually and theologically important for the Church. In that scripture, the Protoevangelium of James, it was described that the parents of Mary, who were Saints Joachim and Anne offered their daughter, Mary, to God in the Temple at the age of 3 years old.
The action of Joachim and Anne was an expression of their gratefulness to the Lord. This old couple offered back to God the very gift that they have received from God.
It was in this way that Mary had been consecrated to God for the purpose that God transforms the life of Mary. Hence, this feast of Mary tells us how God consecrates a life that is fully offered to Him. This tells us too, how God can make a simple offering to become so wonderful and beautiful.
This feast prepares us for the Immaculate Conception of Mary and of the great mystery that we will celebrate on Christmas day, the birth of Jesus. Thus, through the act of sacrifice of the Joachim and Anne and the act of faith of Mary’s “yes” to the Lord; God in return blessed not just Joachim and Anne and Mary, but, each of us, through the birth of Jesus.
This is the message for us today. We are called to offer back to God all that we have.
As husband and wife, offer back to God your marriage life, making God the very center of your marriage.
As a family, offer to God your very relationships including your joys even your sacrifices and pains.
As a professional, offer to God your work, your passion, your talents and even your insecurities and failures.
As a young person, offer to God your dreams and hopes and even your fears and anxieties of the future.
As an old person, offer to God your good old days, the days that you have spent on this earth with your loved ones including the good and bad experiences and even your illness and uncertainties in life.
In offering to God what we have, it also calls us to be confident in God, to trust him fully. God promises us that when we are able to offer what we have to Him; He will surely bless them and transform them beyond our expectation. God will certainly bring forth life, healing, reconciliation and wonderful and beautiful things through us and among us. Hinaut pa.
Jom Baring, CSsR