Christmas 1 - Year B
What’s the right time to move toward purity/justice? The right time to be dedicated to larger visions?
Are you going to wait for New Year’s midnight plus a minute? How about another 40 days for purification, which would take us to Groundhog Day 2012? [What would happen if Mary presented herself for purification and she didn’t cast a shadow?]
Poor Mary, here to be purified and instead of that being the biggie we have Simeon and Anna butting in to talk about Jesus. Even after the ceremony is done, it is not talked about in terms of a new start for Mary to look toward more teen pregnancies but the focus is on Jesus growing strong and wise. The favor that was Mary’s is transferred to Jesus, just like that - ahh, patriarchy.
In Luke we find other details overlooked - the redemption of the firstborn (5 shekels) as well as a reference to the cost of betrayal (30 pieces of silver).
These details aside, a question remains about what rituals you see as important enough to go out of your way to fulfill? Would you have stayed on in Bethlehem for 40 days? It was probably out of the question to walk back to Nazareth and to return to Jerusalem in that time. Did Joseph have enough saved up? What did he do about jobs carpentry jobs previously contracted? Do any of these practical questions have anything to do with anything?
At any rate, Luke seems to not know all the rituals required for birthing. Even without them, blessings from Simeon and Anna come forth. Note the blessings that arise in your life even when not following the straight and narrow. You might almost think that G*D is about being a prodigal blesser. And your image of G*D; your being in G*D’s image?