Forty days ago, we celebrated the feast of Christmas, the birth of Jesus. According to the law of Moses, at the time of Christ's birth, for forty days after the birth of her son, a woman was excluded from public worship. Then on the fortieth day, she would bring an offering of thanksgiving and praise to God for the safe birth of the child... When Mary and Joseph went to the temple for purification, they took the child Jesus to be "consecrated to the Lord," and they offered a pair of turtledoves , the offering of the poor. The were careful to observe all that the law required. In the temple, they encounter Simeon, to whom the Holy Spirit had revealed that he would not see death until he had set eyes on the Christ of the Lord.
Jesus is the light for all to see. His coming brought light, and as Christians, we are called to carry and share the light of Christ with others. (info from Saints and Feast Days, Sisters of Notre Dame)
Our family celebrates this beautiful feast day, a day of light, by reading the Gospel, Luke 2:22-40, and discuss it at breakfast (we read the daily Gospel every morning at breakfast).
For afternoon "Snack and Bible", I read the summary fromSaints and Feast Days: Lives of the Saints: with a Calendar and Ways to Celebrateand then the children perform a short skit that I created based on the Gospel, each playing a different part, as we run through it several times. They love to perform skits! We then attend the Holy Mass, celebrating the true light! Mass starts with a candle blessing, each child has a candle to hold and Father blesses the candles. The candles are then lit and we process to our seats. It is beautiful.
We are invited to take these candles home and light them for family prayer, rosary, and for any time we feel inspired to light them (storms, special intentions, etc.)