30 December 2009
Today’s Readings: 1 John 2:12-17/Luke 2:36-40
The Gospel passage tells us of two contrasting fates: that of Anna and that of Jesus.
Anna represents the faithful law-observant remnant of the chosen people who totally conform to God’s will and are expectant of his promised Kingdom. In preparation for it she spends her life in prayer and fasting. She is governed by God’s spirit and guided by him in recognizing the Messiah in the person of a baby.
On the other hand, we have the baby Jesus taking his time to grow up like the rest of us. He could have come to us already as an adult human but he chooses to go through the slow process of growing into maturity. He shares the human experience of pain, hardships, simple joys, warmth and affection. All that Anna experienced in life, Jesus also experienced in his own unique way. Like her, his focus is also God but since he is the unique Son, his experience of his Father in our human condition is totally his- in the same way that nobody can take from us our uniquely personal experience of life with God and his people.
Our Gospel passage has God in his temple as the center, presenting Anna as the faithful continuity of the best of the ancient tradition of Israel which is slowly fading away in order to give to the new realities and introducing Jesus as the best of new realities that God is giving to his new people.
The old is slowly passing away. Now, God is presenting to us the things of the New Testament.
Loving Father, give us the grace to understand the wisdom involved in growing up slowly and growing old gracefully. Help us to care for the aged and appreciate their contribution to society. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.