Father Mark offers some history and thoughts to ponder on the feast commemorating Our Lady being taken to the Temple at the age of three by her parents.
The new Temple, the all-holy Virgin, is shaped and formed in the old Temple. She who is destined to be the living Temple of the Word dwells in the Temple of the Old Dispensation. She hears the chanting of the psalms, the prophets, and the Law. She smells the incense and the burnt offerings. She observes the faithful of Israel streaming towards Zion, filling the Temple, seeking the face of the Lord. Priest, altar, and oblation are not unfamiliar to the Virgin who will take her place at the foot of the Cross and, gazing upon her Son, recognize in Him the Eternal priest, the Altar of the New Covenant, the Lamb who takes away the sins of the world.This feast is a wonderful prelude to Advent. According to Dom Gueranger:
Mary, led to the Temple in order to prepare in retirement, humility, and love for her incomparable destiny, had also the mission of perfecting at the foot of the figurative altar the prayer of the human race, of itself ineffectual to draw down the savior from heaven. (From Abbot Gueranger's The Liturgical Year, Vol XV )Share