Today we celebrate the feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother, and sister, and mother”. (Mt. 12:46-50)
The Memorial of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Temple recalls – according to the apocryphal gospels, the day on which Mary, while still a child, was brought to the temple in Jerusalem to be offered to God. The Church wants to emphasize not so much the historical event in itself, of which there is no trace in the Gospels, but the total gift that Mary made of herself, by listening: “Blessed are those who hear the Word of God and observe it” (Lk. 11:28). This experience prepared the young girl from Nazareth to become the “temple of the Son of God”.
The celebration of this feast dates back to the 6th century in the East with the dedication of the Basilica of Saint Mary the New built by the Emperor Justinian I near the ruins of the temple in Jerusalem. There is evidence that various monasteries in Italy celebrated the feast in the 9th century. It was not until the 15th century that it was included in the Roman Missal.
This is also the on which the Church celebrates the World Day of Cloistered Life, established by Pope Pius XII in 1953.
Mary is the woman who knows how to listen, who knows how to contemplate, who knows how to refer everything to her Son – “Do whatever He tells you” (Jn. 2:5). Mary is the One who never abandoned her Son Jesus, not even along the way of the Cross. She “stood” under the Cross. She is a disciple who never abandons the Lord Jesus, who always “stands behind” Him.
Today let’s celebrate the feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, since every Christian is called to look at Mary so as to learn from her, to entrust themselves to her intercession and to guard the “purity of the faith” against any idols that surround us.
Heaven is our Goal.