The Canticle of Simeon

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Today is the fifth day in the Octave of Christmas. In our first reading from 1 John 2, St. John talks about light and darkness. He writes, “Whoever says he is in the light, yet hates his brother, is still in the darkness.” We need to examine our hearts and accept the light of Christ in our lives. In the Gospel reading from Luke 2, we see the story of a man named Simeon.

Simeon had been told by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death until he had seen the Christ. When Mary and Joseph brought the child Jesus to the temple to offer sacrifice, he knew that God’s word had come to pass. He says a most amazing prayer. It is known as the Canticle of Simeon, and is said in the Liturgy of the Hours each night just before going to bed. Rather than ending today’s reflection with my own prayer, let us end it with Simeon’s.

Lord, now let your servant go in peace; your word has been fulfilled: my own eyes have seen the salvation which you have prepared in the sight of every people: a light to reveal you to the nations and the glory of your people Israel.

Today’s Readings


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