According to the law of Moses, every woman who gave birth to a boy contracted legal impurity for forty days, after which she had to offer, as an expiatory sacrifice, a lamb and a pigeon; and if she was poor, two pigeons or two turtledoves. Mary, by the virginal conception of Jesus and by her miraculous birth, was textually excluded from the law of purification. However, she wanted to subject heself to it as an example of obedience and to not reveal the divine wonders.
Another law ordered that every firstborn be offered to the Lord; if he was from the tribe of Levi, he was assigned to the Temple service; if he belonged to another tribe, he was rescued with five shekels of silver.
In compliance with both laws, the Holy Family is going to the Temple today. There, the old Simeon receives the Comforter of Israel in his arms and reveals to Mary the destinies of that Child. This first entry of Christ into the Temple had been foretold by
the prophet Malachi, who saw him enter to transform the Mosaic ritual worship into the spiritual worship of the Christian religion.
This double mystery of the Presentation of Christ and the Purification of the Virgin is reflected in the texts of the Mass.
V/. Blessed Virgin Mary.
R/. Pray for us.