Gospel: Lk 2: 22-35
When the days were completed for their purification according to the law of Moses, the parents of Jesus took him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, just as it is written in the law of the Lord, every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord, and to offer the sacrifice of a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons, in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord. Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Christ of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying: “Lord, now let your servant go in peace; your word has been fulfilled: my own eyes have seen the salvation which you prepared in the sight of every people, a light to reveal you to the nations and the glory of your people Israel.” The child’s father and mother were amazed at what was said about him; and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “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 the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”
LET ME DEPART IN PEACE: Thomas Clarkson and William Smith had worked very hard for the abolition of slave trade in England. When Thomas Clarkson, who was an ordained deacon in the Anglican Church, heard of the abolition of slave trade in England in 1807, he wrote to William Smith, “dear brother, now let us depart in peace for our eyes have seen the salvation prepared for our people”. Simeon was a spirit filled person. He was promised that he would not die without seeing Salvation. Led to the temple by the Holy Spirt, he declared that Jesus was that Salvation. The spirit of Jesus invites us to participate in building a world which is just, peaceful and loving. Unless we collaborate in building a better world, we shall not depart in peace.
PRAYER: Lord give me the opportunity to see a world of equality, justice and love before my death.
YOUR WORD HAS BEEN FULFILLED: Keeping us within the spirit of the Joyful Mysteries, the gospel reading narrates to us the event of the presentation of the Lord in the temple – the feast will be actually celebrated on 2nd February. During the event of the presentation as narrated by Luke in addition to Jesus and his parents, there are two persons present in the scene: a prophet and a prophetess. The gospel of text of today focuses on Simeon. His prayer (the Nunc Dimittis) is very powerful: “Lord, now let your servant go in peace; your word has been fulfilled…” The old man is able to see in the person of this little 40-days old baby the fulfilment of the promise of God, the messiah who would reestablish the glory of God. What powerful eyes! The eyes of faith! We too should spend some time in front of the crib looking at the wonderful mystery enacted there. Yes, His words have been fulfilled.