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Sermon for 2 February 2014
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THE PRESENTATION OF THE LORD A + 2ND FEBRUARY 2014. YEAR OF EVANGELISATION.

MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST

My Dear People,

This is the moment when our Lord's Blessed Mother and her Spouse, Joseph went to the temple to offer the Mosaic sacrifice laid down for the poor for a First Born - two turtle doves. This moment now of course is celebrated each time we pray the Joyful Mysteries of the Holy Rosary. Today we bless and light candles - for Jesus is the Light of the Nations.

It is a moment filled with Divine Presence for the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are present too in the Temple of Jerusalem. Holy Simeon had been told by God that he would not see death before he had set his eyes on the Messiah who would save His people from their sins. At that very moment God the Holy Spirit led him into the Temple and of all the "First Bornes" that day Presented to the Lord, Simeon knew that this was the babe. Holy Simeon so venerable in age and holiness took baby Jesus in his frail arms and issued his great prayer the "Nunc Dimittis" which prayed at Compline (Night Prayer) every day of the Year.

"Now Master you can let your servant go in peace for my eyes have seen your salvation… a light you have prepared for all the nations to see." That is us you know.

But then there is a sad note and one which has come down to the Church through St Luke who knew Our Lady. Simeon also under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit then turned to Mary. First he blessed both Joseph and Mary but then addressing Mary only he prophesied that this "light of the nations" - this Promised Child would be DESTINED TO BE REJECTED ...THE SIGN TO BE REJECTED AND "A SWORD WILL PIERCE YOUR OWN SOUL TOO SO THAT THE SECRET THOUGHTS OF MANY WILL BE LAID BARE."

My dear people our Lady bore that destiny all her life from the Presentation to the Cross of Golgotha. One of her titles is "Our Lady of Sorrows" is it not? She bore that prophesy of Simeon even when St Peter was remonstrating with our Lord when our Lord talked about the Son of Man suffering greatly and being rejected. Peter did not want to know. Mary knew all the time. She was in on the Messianic secret.

In a way that is why God's people love their mother so much. She knows the depths doesn't she? There is no sorrow that our Lady does not know about and feel for and support us is.

Dear Anna too at the age of eighty four she was chosen by God. You old folk should hold your head high today for Simeon and Anna were really old and here God was using them as his chosen instruments witnessing to the reality of our Saviour while still under 12 months old. So you do not know what task God has for you to do still.

God Bless, Fr Tom Connolly



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