Rev. Anthony Giamello Pastor, St. John the Apostle/St. Bernadette
The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord commemorates how Jesus, as a baby, was presented to God in the Temple in Jerusalem. This is another ‘epiphany’ celebration insofar as the Christ Child is revealed as the Messiah through the canticle and words of Simeon and the testimony of Anna the prophetess. In the Eastern Orthodox Church and some Eastern Catholic Churches, it is one of the twelve Great Feasts, The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord is a combined feast, commemorating the Jewish practice of the purification of the mother after childbirth and the presentation of the child to God in the Temple. Known as the Feast of the Purification of Mary and the Feast of Candlemas (because of the blessing and procession of candles on this day acknowledging Christ as the light of the nations), this day is also called the Feast of Encounter because on it the New Testament, represented by the Baby Jesus, encountered the Old Testament, represented by Simeon and Anna. Joseph offered two pigeons in the Temple as sacrifice for the purification of Mary after her childbirth and for the presentation. This feast originated in Jerusalem in the 4th century and spread in Rome by the middle of the 5th century under its Greek name, Hypapánte.
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