Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary| Daily Meditation| Daily Quote by S. Padre Pio| Divine Mercy Reflection
Presentation of Mary
Mary’s presentation was celebrated in Jerusalem in the sixth century. A church was built there in honor of this mystery. The Eastern Church was more interested in the feast, but it does appear in the West in the 11th century. Although the feast at times disappeared from the calendar, in the 16th century it became a feast of the universal Church.
As with Mary’s birth, we read of Mary’s presentation in the temple only in apocryphal literature. In what is recognized as an unhistorical account, theProtoevangelium of James tells us that Anna and Joachim offered Mary to God in the Temple when she was three years old. This was to carry out a promise made to God when Anna was still childless.
Though it cannot be proven historically, Mary’s presentation has an important theological purpose. It continues the impact of the feasts of the Immaculate Conception (December 8) and of the birth of Mary (September 8). It emphasizes that the holiness conferred on Mary from the beginning of her life on earth continued through her early childhood and beyond.
It is sometimes difficult for modern Westerners to appreciate a feast like this. The Eastern Church, however, was quite open to this feast and even somewhat insistent about celebrating it. Even though the feast has no basis in history, it stresses an important truth about Mary: From the beginning of her life, she was dedicated to God. She herself became a greater temple than any made by hands. God came to dwell in her in a marvelous manner and sanctified her for her unique role in God's saving work. At the same time, the magnificence of Mary enriches her children. They, too, are temples of God and sanctified in order that they might enjoy and share in God's saving work.
"Hail, holy throne of God, divine sanctuary, house of glory, jewel most fair, chosen treasure house, and mercy seat for the whole world, heaven showing forth the glory of God. Purest Virgin, worthy of all praise, sanctuary dedicated to God and raised above all human condition, virgin soil, unplowed field, flourishing vine, fountain pouring out waters, virgin bearing a child, mother without knowing man, hidden treasure of innocence, ornament of sanctity, by your most acceptable prayers, strong with the authority of motherhood, to our Lord and God, Creator of all, your Son who was born of you without a father, steer the ship of the Church and bring it to a quiet harbor" (adapted from a homily by St. Germanus on the Presentation of the Mother of God).
The Bread of Life:
Lord Jesus, you are truly present in the Eucharist. Through it, we are united to you, in your flesh and blood, and part of the supernatural family of the New Adam. Thank you, Lord!
Quote by S. Padre Pio:
Let us listen to what the Lord tells us ... by the mouth of his holy apostle Paul: We look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen.
Divine Mercy Reflection
Reflections on Notebook Five: 263-326
As we begin Notebook Five, Saint Faustina’s understanding of the Mercy of God should be more alive to you. Hopefully you have a deeper understanding of the infinite love of God and His burning desire to embrace you, free you from the burden of sin, and shower you with His grace.
It should also be clear that God is silent at times so as to strengthen you, purify you and deepen your trust in Him. God’s wisdom and His ways are beyond what we could ever imagine. He is perfect in His love and you must have full confidence in the direction He gives to your life.
As we enter into this notebook, try to believe and live all that you have read so far. It’s one thing to believe it intellectually, it’s quite another thing to believe it with your actions. You must believe in the Mercy of God with your actions. You must let all that you have read take hold of you and direct the way you live. One way to do this is to go back to any reflections that have stood out so far. If something has stood out, be it a particular reflection or a general theme, pay attention to that. The Message of Mercy is broad and all encompassing, but it’s also particular to you. Let the Lord speak directly to you revealing the specific truths that you need to embrace the most.
Reflection 325: Relying on the Saints
Imagine the soul who has lived a life filled with complete abandonment to God. They achieved the heights of holiness and were not deterred by earthly distractions. Throughout their life they sought to serve our Lord and to be a continual instrument of Mercy for others. Many people were saved on account of their sanctity and their total devotion to the Will of God. Now imagine that holy soul entering into the glories of Heaven. What a profound experience of absolute joy! Nothing could be more glorious than that moment. But once in Heaven, is it conceivable that this holy soul will forget about those on Earth? Is it possible that the people who were loved and served so deeply would disappear from their minds as a result of being in Heaven? Most certainly not. In fact, once in Heaven, the holy souls who lived on Earth are even more consumed with a desire to spread the Mercy of God. Seek out these saints. Seek their intercession, ask for their inspiration, follow their example and know that you have a myriad of holy men and women seeking to serve you from the glories of Heaven (See Diary #1582).
Ponder the saints this day. Especially ponder their burning love for you and their desire that all people receive the Mercy of God. God uses them from Heaven and continually sends them to distribute His grace. Open your heart to these holy men and women and they will pour forth the Mercy of God into your life.
Oh, holy saints of God! How glorious you are in your Heavenly splendor! I thank you for your love and service on Earth and now I call upon your intercession from Heaven. Please pray for me and for all people that we may imitate your holiness while on Earth and obtain the glory in which you now share. Saints of God, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in You.