Sunday, November 17, 2019

The Fifth Day in the Octave of Christmas

The Fifth Day in the Octave of Christmas

Today’s Audio Mass Readings – Lectionary: 202

1st Reading – 1 JN 2:3-11

Beloved:
The way we may be sure that we know Jesus
is to keep his commandments.
Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not keep his commandments
is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
But whoever keeps his word,
the love of God is truly perfected in him.
This is the way we may know that we are in union with him:
whoever claims to abide in him ought to walk just as he walked.

Beloved, I am writing no new commandment to you
but an old commandment that you had from the beginning.
The old commandment is the word that you have heard.
And yet I do write a new commandment to you,
which holds true in him and among you,
for the darkness is passing away,
and the true light is already shining.
Whoever says he is in the light,
yet hates his brother, is still in the darkness.
Whoever loves his brother remains in the light,
and there is nothing in him to cause a fall.
Whoever hates his brother is in darkness;
he walks in darkness
and does not know where he is going
because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

Responsorial Psalm – PS 96:1-2A, 2B-3, 5B-6

R. (11a) Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
Sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all you lands.
Sing to the LORD; bless his name.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
Announce his salvation, day after day.
Tell his glory among the nations;
among all peoples, his wondrous deeds.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
The LORD made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty go before him;
praise and grandeur are in his sanctuary.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!

Alleluia – LK 2:32

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
A light of revelation to the Gentiles
and glory for your people Israel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel – LK 2:22-35

When the days were completed for their purification
according to the law of Moses,
the parents of Jesus took him up to Jerusalem
to present him to the Lord,
just as it is written in the law of the Lord,
Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord,
and to offer the sacrifice of
a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons,
in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord.

Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon.
This man was righteous and devout,
awaiting the consolation of Israel,
and the Holy Spirit was upon him.
It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit
that he should not see death
before he had seen the Christ of the Lord.
He came in the Spirit into the temple;
and when the parents brought in the child Jesus
to perform the custom of the law in regard to him,
he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying:

“Lord, now let your servant go in peace;
your word has been fulfilled:
my own eyes have seen the salvation
which you prepared in the sight of every people,
a light to reveal you to the nations
and the glory of your people Israel.”

The child’s father and mother were amazed at what was said about him;
and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother,
“Behold, this child is destined
for the fall and rise of many in Israel,
and to be a sign that will be contradicted
(and you yourself a sword will pierce)
so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”

Catholic Daily Reflections

Simeon’s Prophecy

Saint Thomas Becket, Bishop and Martyr – Optional Memorial

“Lord, now let your servant go in peace; your word has been fulfilled: my own eyes have seen the salvation which you prepared in the sight of every people, a light to reveal you to the nations and the glory of your people Israel.” Luke 2:29-32

On this, the fifth day of the Octave of Christmas, we are given the witness of the prophet Simeon. This holy man was promised by God by a personal revelation that he would actually see, with his own eyes, the Savior of the World. Throughout his life he would have anticipated this moment. He would have longed for it and hoped for it. And then, one day the moment came. Simeon would have woken up that day, going about his normal routine like any other day. However, the moment that Mary and Joseph brought their newborn Child into the temple, Simeon knew in his heart that this Child was the promised Savior.

His words are powerful. He says, “Lord, now You can let Your servant go in peace…for my eyes have seen the salvation You have prepared…” In other words, Simeon realized that his life was now complete. He was ready to die because he had now been privileged to actually see the Christ. He held Jesus in his arms and gave glory to the Father for this moment.

We should strive to learn from holy Simeon. No, we are not a prophet in the Temple some 2,000 years ago, but we are privileged to see the Christ each day in numerous ways. The Child Simeon held was God indeed. But He was God under the veil of the flesh of a little Child. Simeon, nonetheless, saw Him for who He was and rejoiced.

We must strive to perceive the presence of the Savior all around us and rejoice with Simeon’s joy. Christ is present in every heart that is given to God, every Sacrament of the Church, every reading of the Holy Scripture, and He is especially present to us within our hearts. Our hearts must be that temple in which we discover the presence of the Christ Child and we must take Him into our lives rejoicing in how close He is.

Reflect, today, upon that scene of Simeon taking the Child into his hands and seeing the Savior under the veil of the flesh and bones of this Infant. Seek out Christ in the same way that Simeon did and ponder the many ways that He is present to You. Know that He is near and that He wants to fill your life with His peace.

Lord, I thank You for the great witness of Simeon the Prophet. Thank You for Your fidelity to Simeon in letting him see You as a little Child. May I always imitate his great faith and seek You all my life, waiting for You to come to me in veiled ways so that my heart may rejoice in Your presence. Jesus, I trust in You.

Daily Catholic Readings App Download