November 21, 2006


Today is the feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, recalling her dedication in the Temple by her parents, Ss. Anne and Joachim.

It's a curious feast day in that it has its origins in extra-canonical scripture, namely the Protoevangelion of James. I couldn't think of any other feast day like that; can anybody else?

In a way it reminds me of the Jewish feast of Hanukkah, with its origin in the second book of Maccabees. Because Catholic Christians accept the Old Testament of the Septuagint, while Protestants and Jews do not, this feast doesn't appear in the current version of the Jewish Scriptures. So, oddly enough, this Jewish feast appears in the Christian, but not the Jewish Scriptures. To make matters even more strange, Hanukkah also appears in the Gospel of John at verse 10:22.


Anonymous said...

A little Hanukkah background that might help you isn't a festival, it's only a chag, a sort of celebration. We have 3 major festivals (the Shalosh Regalim,Pesach, Shavu'ot and Sukkot,) as I'm sure you know, that reflect the 3 major Temple pilgrimages. Because of the desecration of the Temple and war with the Greeks, the Sukkot festival, held in the Fall, was not observed. When the Temple was restored, what was celebrated was not the victory, but simply the delayed festival. It was originally referred to as "The Sukkot in Kislev" and was maintained later as a memorial. Our Scriptures were pretty much canonized already by the time the Maccabee material was written down.Certainly not everyone was supportive of the Maccabean/Qumran/separatist types, so it was seen as pretty political. Just thought I'd share.:)

Brother Charles said...

Thank you so much, for the help of your sense and knowledge. It's always good to hear from our older siblings in the faith of Abraham!