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Doctrines & Morals

Love is the mark of true Christians

Today's first reading describes the importance of the law of love. John names fidelity and love as the surest ways to walk in the presence of God, as His faithful people. In today’s Gospel story, we see Mary and Joseph respecting the Mosaic Law by offering the sacrifice prescribed for the poor: a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons. Two others among the Lord’s beloved, the poor and lowly faithful ones, were Simeon and Anna, venerable elderly people dedicated to prayer and fasting and regular worshippers in the Temple of God. Their strong religious spirit rendered them able to recognise the Messiah in the child Jesus as He was brought into the Temple area. Simeon’s joyful response to the child Jesus reminds us that prayer and contemplation are not just a waste of time or an alternative to charity. On the contrary, time could not be better spent than in prayer, since true Christian charity is based upon a solid interior life.

Only people who pray, like Simeon and Anna, are fully open to the breath of the Spirit. They are the ones best able to recognise the Lord when He manifests Himself because they have learned from the one whose name is charity. Simeon’s prophecy of Mary’s sorrow was like a second Annunciation to Mary, for they tell her how her Son is to accomplish His mission, namely, in misunderstanding and sorrow. If Gabriel’s message was a fount of incredible joy, the message of the holy old man in the Temple spoke instead of the Lord’s work of redemption, that would cause great suffering to His Mother. However, its fruits would be magnificent, leading to the “rising” of many, into the light of God’s grace.

May the Lord continue to guide and strengthen us, so that we may always be courageous in living our faith despite the challenges we may encounter in this world! Amen!! Remain bless and have a glorious day!!!

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