Homily for Candlemass or The Feast of the Purification: The Hiddenness and Poverty of Jesus and Mary

The Purification in the Temple: The Hiddenness and Poverty of Jesus and Mary


This Homily was written by his grace Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet (September 27, 1627 – April 12, 1704) who is considered to be one of the greatest homilists of all time.  It does go into detail about the different aspects of the Liturgical rituals of the old law and their relationship the to life of Christ.  He also discusses the perfect unity between Jesus and Mary in their poverty and their early life of hiddenness.

Reflection of Catholic Homily

The Purification of Mary in the temple is truly a great mystery.  This homily discusses the fact the Our Lady Mary despite being sinless still underwent the purification ritual demanded by the Jewish law, maintaining her silence in humility despite submitting to a ritual to allow them to once again become clean.  It also discusses the absolute poverty of Jesus and why the family offered turtle doves which were allowed for poor people to offer and not a lamb. Presentation

Surely — besides the mystery of its conformity to the conduct of Jesus — we have, in this unbroken silence and reserve of Mary’s, a most beautiful picture of a soul perfectly satisfied with the testimony of God and its own conscience alone.  Transcript


The testimony of God is all that matters, and that is why we should be slow to speak in our own defense.  If one thing revels intimacy between two people it is when they have others at the mercy of there joke.  Any two best friends or a Man and Wife can greatly enjoy those small signs, those inside details or that past circumstance that make situations in life funny when it escapes those around them.

We see this kind of inside humor all the time with the God and the Saints, especially the Holy Fools. In this Feast of the Purification we once again kind of have an inside joke between the Holy Family.  Although I am certain that our Lady participated in her ritual purification with great piety, in no way could I see her accusing herself in her heart that she had become impure from the miraculous birth of her son.

Nor do I anticipate that She was shamed because of her great humility, the alternative as the homily stated would have been to assert her rights.  I would say rather that it increased her anticipation and desire for our salvation, for it was reveled to us and it will be revealed to all at the end of days, of her Immaculate Purity.

So the next time you and I dear reader have to endure something or have the oppurtunity to do a great work in silence and hiddeness, don’t worry on the last days it will be revealed.

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Music used under attribution license
Palestrina – Credo- Missa Sicut lilium inter spinas to The Tudor Consort

Image edited by Alleluia Audio Books from this Image under the Creative Commons Attribution License by Reinhardhauke

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