Then the sacrifice of Judah and Jerusalem will please the LORD, as in the days of old, as in years gone by.

Today we celebrate a great occasion – both in the Church and in our family. First, the Church. Today we celebrate the Feast of the Presentation of our Lord in Temple. I am going to use one of my cheat cards for this feast and share with you Bishop Barron’s reflection today…

Friends, our Gospel today celebrates the Presentation of the Lord in the temple. We are meant to understand that the glory of Yahweh is returning to the temple in the arms of Mary and Joseph, thus fulfilling one of the deepest aspirations of Israel’s people.

Now, there is more to this story than the return of the Lord to his temple. The Son of God, having taken to himself a human nature, is presented to the Father, and thereby the human race is brought back on line. This little baby is the reconciliation of divinity and humanity, is the very essence of temple sacrifice.

At the climax of his life, this baby, now come of age, would enter the temple again. This time, he would pass judgment on it and declare his own body as the new temple. A few days later, on the cross, he would perform the final temple sacrifice, offering himself to the Father, even as he bore the sins of the human race.

The Presentation of Jesus in the temple, perfected on the cross, is re-presented every time the Mass is celebrated. The Presentation of the Lord goes on now in our churches, in our temples.

Bishop Robert Barron

I wanted to spend the few minutes I have this morning talking about the “feast” we are celebrating in our family today – my youngest daughter Teresa’s “Senior Night” for basketball. I’ve probably mentioned this more than once in past blogs, but Teresa is the youngest of our eight children. My wife and I have experienced the joy of watching all of our children plays sports throughout the years – coaching them in their youth and just absolutely enjoying them all compete at one level or another in high school sports( and even College sports). I have anticipated this year for many years coming and because of COVID, I feel like I’ve been robbed of it, watching Teresa’s final year of basketball on YouTube (on the positive side, it is a National Broadcast) instead of being in the stands. Somehow complaining about every missed called from the officials just isn’t the same from the comfort of my easy chair in the family room. I digress. As hard as this year has been on me, it has been even more frustrating for Teresa. It seems her coach has made a decision to run with the youth this year and her playing time has decrease dramatically from years in the past. There has been many a night coming home from the game where she went straight to her room to cry off the frustration. Keeping that in mind, I am still very proud of what Teresa has accomplished, not only in the past, but more importantly this year. Even with the reduced playing time, she is always the first one to practice, she pushes herself to the limit during practice and is always one of the last to leave. She supports her teammates during the game and when she does get onto the court, she has learned to play with a controlled intensity and to make the most of her time on the court knowing whatever small amount she can contribute could make the difference at the end of the game. I am so proud of her attitude, her efforts, her commitment, her love of the sport and her love of the competition. She is the true example of everything Sarah and I have tried to instill in our children. Life might not always be fair, but it requires 100% of your effort, 100% of your commitment regardless of what we find fair or not. Our goal for anything we do should be for the praise and glory of God. Because He commits 100% of His love to us regardless of how we live and act, we should offer that same commitment back. Teresa has done that. I am so proud of her for that and can’t say how much I love her for the commitment she has shown to her team, to herself and more importantly, to God.

So to end this post on an even brighter note:

  1. The Marquette Mustangs, the high school my daughter plays for, are currently ranked #2 in the City/County for girls basketball. I pray that they are able to finish strong in this strange, strange year of sports and pray that Teresa’s commitment grows even stronger as they complete the remainder of this season.
  2. Although her playing time has diminished (bringing to light my daily mantra – and I paraphrase – “They must increase; I must decrease”), her efforts have not gone unnoticed. She was offered and has graciously accepted a 2-year scholarship to play basketball for St. Louis Community College. I am grateful to for this opportunity. It extends my streak of watching my children play competitive sports another 2 years and that my friends, is something to give thanks to God about.

Do something great for our Lord today – give your full commitment to whatever you do today. Always remember, that God is in 100% for you; it is only right that we be in it 100% for Him. GOOOO TEAM!!!

I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy grace, to sin no more and to avoid the near occasion of sin.

God’s will, not mine, be done.

Be not afraid; just have faith.

Jesus, I trust in You.

He must increase; I must decrease.

Lord, if You wish, You can make me clean.

But you man of God chose righteousness, devotion, faith, love, patience and gentleness. Compete well for the faith.

One thought on “Then the sacrifice of Judah and Jerusalem will please the LORD, as in the days of old, as in years gone by.

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