Faithful to the religious observances of their faith, Mary and Joseph took Jesus to the Temple forty days after his birth to dedicate Him to God. This was an important custom of the Jewish religion. It was also customary for a wealthy family to bring a lamb and a young pigeon or turtle dove to be sacrificed. Poorer families, however, were permitted to offer two pigeons or two turtle doves for the offering. When the Holy Family arrived at the Temple, they were greeted by a just and pious man named Simeon. His words brought with them the first of Our Lady’s sufferings.
Read Luke 2: 22-35. What did Simeon prophesy about Jesus? How was it the occasion of great joy and great sorrow for Our Lady? In what way was she called to exemplify the three hallmarks of a handmaid of the Lord – receptivity, trust and surrender?