31st January 2016

Candlemas

This week we celebrate the festival of Candlemas. It marks the end of the church’s celebration of Christmas and Epiphany. 

Candlemas commemorates the ritual purification of Mary, 40 days after the birth of her son Jesus. This day also marks the ritual presentation of the baby Jesus to God in the Temple at Jerusalem.

The Gospel of Luke says that Jesus was met by Anna and Simeon. Simeon held the baby Jesus and called him a Light to the World.

Ritual purification stems back to a Jewish tradition that women were considered unclean after the birth of a child. At the end of this time, women were brought to the Temple or Synagogue to be purified. After the ceremony women were allowed to take part in religious services again.

The festival is called Candlemas because this was the day that all the Church's candles for the year were blessed. Like some other Christian festivals, Candlemas draws some of its elements from Paganism. In pre-Christian times, it was the festival of light. This ancient festival marked the mid-point of winter, half way between the winter solstice (shortest day) and the spring equinox.

May you be blessed too in all that you do this week. Shine bright in the places that God takes you.

If Candlemas be fair and bright

Winter will take another flight

If Candlemas Day be cloud and rain

Winter is gone and will not come again

 
Best Wishes
Jenny

 


2016 Archive
Webpage icon 10th January 2016
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