In the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
February is Heart and Stroke month, and we pray for all those families dealing with issues of the heart. Our hearts are more than just the physical pumps keeping us alive, our hearts are powerful symbols of life and love. And we live love in many ways.
We can celebrate the love in our faith today by celebrating The World Day for Consecrated Life and the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord. We pray for consecrated people who choose to live God's love by living simple uncluttered lives of poverty, chastity, and obedience. Through the gifts of the Holy Spirit, God calls each of us to live in joy and service to God, others, and our world. Consecrated life is one such way of living, or as we call it in our Church: one kind of vocation.
In this Feast of The Presentation of The Lord l (Luke 2:22ff), Jesus is presented and dedicated to God in the Temple. In the Temple, Simeon and the prophet Anna, who had foretold Jesus' coming, recognized him. Mary and Joseph must have been floored by what they said but "when they had performed everything according to the law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own city, Nazareth. And the Child [Jesus] grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favour of God was upon Him." Like Jesus we can grow in wisdom and grace…it just takes a while.
Jesus, when you were presented in the temple that day, the unfolding prophecies of old were almost completed. May we have the wisdom of Anna and Simeon in hoping to see goodness and love even when life becomes difficult.
May we be strong in faith and trust in you.
May our hearts share your love.
May our lives reflect your love in our care for one another and the world.
Finding Jesus in our lives can take some time so … God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference
Together with Anna and Simeon and all the holy people in our community, we move into our day in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.