Saturday 29 November 2014

Presentation of the Lord

Malaysia is a melting-pot of different ethnic groups. Even within some ethnic groups, there is a further breakdown according to language dialect and place of origin. For example, among the Chinese, we have different language dialects which are spoken such as Hokkien, Hakka, Teochew and Cantonese, though the written word among these dialects is about the same. Even among people who for example call themselves Hokkien or Hakka, there are differences in traditions, customs and practices which have been passed down from one generation to the next and many Chinese children would have been taught from a young age on how to observe and keep alive such traditions, customs and practices.

The Gospel today also tells us about keeping traditions, and in this case, Jewish traditions. Mary and Joseph kept the traditions of the Law of the Lord. They took Jesus up to Jerusalem to consecrate Jesus to the Lord since He was their firstborn, and also for the purpose of purification. By doing so, we are then introduced to Simeon and Anna, who had waited long until they finally set eyes on the Christ of the Lord, the child to all who looked forward to the deliverance of Jerusalem.

We too have an obligation to keep the tradition of the Law of the Lord. In our case, that tradition is the Sunday Mass. Keeping our tradition by coming for Mass every Sunday may not be always exciting and inspiring, but it is necessary and beneficial for us, as we are being nourished both physically and spiritually by the Eucharist. Are we willing to be faithful and consistent in keeping our tradition of the Law of the Lord, so that we could grow closer to Him and He could nourish and care for us?

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