In 1997, St. John Paul II established the special Day of Consecrated Life to coincide with the Feast of the Presentation of the Child Jesus in the Temple of Jerusalem (February 2). The Pope gave three reasons for his selection of February 2 as a special day for religious women and men: first, to praise and thank the Lord for the gift of consecrated life; second, to promote the knowledge and appreciation of consecrated women and men by all the People of God; and third, to invite all those who have dedicated their life to the cause of the Gospel to celebrate the wonderful ways that Lord has worked through them.
On this day, we recall that Mary and Joseph brought the child Jesus to the Temple in accordance with the law to present him to God. They did what they had the power to do and what needed to be done. Their actions were affirmed by those present and they are praised for following the tradition. May we take time this day to pray for all those who have been models for us and for those who continue to do so. May we always remember that God’s love for us is far greater than our love for God’s is unconditional and full of grace.
Pat Schifini, OSU