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Simeon and Anna, a man and a woman of advanced age, greeted the Lord with the devoted services of their professions of faith. As they saw him, he was small in body, but they understood him to be great in his divinity. Figuratively speaking, this denotes the synagogue, the Jewish people, who, wearied by the long waiting of the incarnation, were ready with both their arms (their pious actions) and their voices (their unfeigned faith) to exalt and magnify him as soon as he came. They were ready to acclaim him and say, “Direct me in your truth and teach me, for you are my saving God, and for you I have waited all the day.” What needs to be mentioned, too, is that deservedly both sexes hurried to meet him, offering congratulations, since he appeared as the Redeemer of both.

Bede, Homilies on the Gospels, quoted in Arthur A Just (ed), Luke, Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, New Testament III, (Intervarsity Press, 2003) 48.

It’s the feast of the Holy Family today and there’s quite a lot that one could say about that, but I will desist! It’s a beautiful gospel in any case and so I’ll post this now instead of waiting for 2 February.

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