Luke 2:33-36 NRSVue
33And the child’s father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him. 34Then Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, “This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel and to be a sign that will be opposed 35so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed—and a sword will pierce your own soul, too.”
36There was also a prophet, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, having lived with her husband seven years after her marriage,
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Some thoughts on this scripture
Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, appears and disappears in this incident. She is recorded as somebody who faithfully waited and watched for the movement of God in her life – and she did not miss the moment. I ask for the grace that I need as I wait for signs of the Lord’s movement and action, that I may notice and recognize where God’s spirit is at work.
As Joseph and Mary brought the child Jesus for blessing they realized that he would bring questions to their lives and challenge their comforts. I pray that all parents be ready to accept the questions that each life brings.
We name this encounter among the joyful mysteries of the Rosary. I wonder if Mary in her old age would have felt it a joyful memory. /A sword will pierce your own soul too./ Hidden in Simeon's stage whisper is the shadow of the rejection and crucifixion of her son.
You could have said it to me, Lord. I have known sorrowful mysteries, but did not always see your hand in them.
Can we sometimes read the gospels and be amazed at what Jesus said and what was said about him? Mary and Joseph must often had wondered together what their child would be like and what this special child would do. They had some inkling that the life and mission of Jesus would bring hardship to him and to them. The blessing of Simeon may have strengthened them in the years after they met him. Give thanks for all who have blessed you, helped you and encouraged you in your life of faith.
Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, appears and disappears in this incident. She is recorded as somebody who faithfully waited and watched for the movement of God in her life - and she did not miss the moment. I ask for the grace that I need as I wait for signs of the Lord's movement and action, that I may notice and recognize where God's spirit is at work.