Monday, February 2, 2009

Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord: Candlemas

In All Generations Shall Call Me Blessed, Fr. Stefano Manelli quotes from Fr. Laurentin, who gives a precise explanation of the Presentation:

“The presentation of Jesus in the Temple is not a standard biblical scene. It was not at all customary to recount the presentation of a hero. The only precedent is in chapter one of the first book of Samuel, and Samuel’s presentation is quite different. It is not tied to a prescription of the law. The timing is different: in
I Sam. 1:22-24 it takes place after Samuel is weaned, while in Luke it takes place 40 days after Jesus’ birth. Samuel remains there forever (I Sam. 1:22), while Jesus returns to Nazareth (2:39). The significance of the act is quite different, for the presentation of Jesus, according to Luke, has an apocalyptic and theophanic character. He who bears the divine names of Holy, Lord, and Son of God, visits the temple as a poor child, but he is recognized by the witnesses as the 'Salvation' (lystrosis, 2:38) of Israel . The newness shines forth everywhere, and always in the same direction. Across the anecdotal diversity the great themes converge.”
(Academy of the Immaculate: 1995), 235
Source: Mary Vitamin

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