"Pleasure it is to hear iwis, the Birdes sing" as the old English carol goes. Such pleasures are heightened when one has time to rest, pray and think. I have not had the chance to blog, but have been taking things easy now that I am free for a few weeks from the parish.
I am still trying to get the hang of this iPad - I am finding it difficult to type on it and some of the features of blogger are not popping up, so forgive me if this post does not look tidy (I can't find "Justify text" for example). Though I write in paragraphs, the text all merges into one! I lost one post I had written and I'm finding it difficult to post pictures - I know, I know, I am technically inept!
Anyway I feel I must blog today given the feast - SS Joachim and Anne, Our Lady's parents and the Lord's grandparents. First of all a happy feast day to all the Annes and Joachims out there, and to all grandparents.
This is an interesting feast for we not only celebrate these two holy people, but we also honour the holy Jewish men and women who lived lives devoted to the covenant God made with Moses, and were sanctified by God for their love of him and their heroic virtue. We do not know most of them, apart from Joachim and Anne, we know only the famous ones whose names and deeds are preserved in the Holy Scriptures. But we must acknowledge these holy Jewish people, our spiritual forebears, our fathers and mothers in the Faith.
Today, then, is a celebration of our Jewish roots! A moment to remind ourselves that we must love the Jewish people as our own. Though they do not accept Jesus as their Messiah, though some may not accept us as brothers and sisters in the Faith, we love them, and admire them for their fidelity to the covenant. We pray that they will embrace Jesus and enter into the new covenant, we must not presume that God has abandoned his people.
SS Anne and Joachim were holy Jewish people. They were not Christians in the sense that they were not baptised, but they offer an example of fidelity to the Word of God. They love God, as they and all Jewish people are urged to love him in the Jewish profession of faith, the Shema, and they trusted in him in the way revealed by the Psalms. Though poor and lowly, God's work was revealed in them - they cooperated with him in the formation of the one who was holy and immaculate and destined to be the Mother of God. as we honour Mary and reflect on her virtues we cannot forget that she found great teachers in her mother and father.
Did Joachim and Anne ever see Jesus? An interesting question. I hope they did. What joy would have filled their hearts as they looked on their little grandson and see before them the divine Lord. How humble they would have been as they stood before this mystery, like Elijah at the mouth of the cave. And imagine that moment as they held little Yeshua in their arms and embraced him and discovered that in him salvation had come to Israel. There is something for your meditation today - to embrace the Infant Jesus in your heart and know that in him salvation has come to you.
UPDATE: I have since found out from the local Apple shop here that Blogger does not work properly on iPad - they said Blogger has not updated its programmes to take account of it. They advised I write what I need to write on the iPad and upload it later on another computer, which I am doing now. There you have it.