4th Day = The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple

O Mary, Our Mother
we come to this place
where you who are sinless
appeared full of grace.
Ave, Ave, Ave Maria!

Make the sign of the cross.
– In the name of the Father, and of the Son,
   And of the Holy Spirit.
– Amen.

Luke 2 : 27-38

 Prompted by the Spirit he came to the Temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the Law required, he took him into his arms and blessed God; and he said:  Now, Master, you are letting your servant go in peace as you promised; for my eyes have seen the salvation which you have made ready in the sight of the nations; a light of revelation for the gentiles and glory for your people Israel.  As the child’s father and mother were wondering at the things that were being said about him, Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Look, he is destined for the fall and for the rise of many in Israel, destined to be a sign that is opposed – and a sword will pierce your soul too – so that the secret thoughts of many may be laid bare.”  There was a prophetess, too, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.  She was well on in years.  Her days of girlhood over, she had been married for seven years before becoming a widow.  She was now eighty four years old and never left the Temple, serving God night and day with fasting and prayer.  She came up just at that moment and began to praise God; and she spoke of the child to all who looked forward to the deliverance of Jerusalem.

Mary and Joseph offer the infant Jesus to God his Father, like all first born children in Israel.  Jesus’ whole life will be an offering.  He came to accomplish the sacrifices of the Old Covenant, and He still offers Himself for us in the Eucharist.  Scripture applies this verse of the Psalm (40: 6-7) to Him:

You do not ask for sacrifice and offerings
but an open ear.
You do not ask for holocaust and victim.
Instead here am I.

When addressing the sick and handicapped in Lourdes on 15th August 1983, Pope John Paul II, seriously wounded two years before, said that for a Christian “the most beautiful gesture one can make is the offering of self”.  We shall therefore recite this decade for the intention of the sick, the handicapped, and their families, so that through this self-offering they may find a way out of their suffering.

Recite the Our Father.
Recite one decade of the Rosary thinking about the Mystery being contemplated.

Hail Mary, full of grace;
the Lord is with thee;
blessed art thou among women,
and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus,
conceived through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Holy Mary, mother of God,
Pray for us sinners,
Now, and at the hour of our death.
Amen.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit who is now and shall be evermore Amen!

Concluding prayer:

Lord
You prepared Mary to be the Mother of your Son.
By her Immaculate Conception,
You protected her from sin, from all the wounds of sin.
This is why She had the strength to say “yes” in faith,
from the Annunciation to the Cross.
What you realized in Mary, Lord, is admirable.
We give you thanks.

In Lourdes, Lord, you prepared Bernadette
to be a witness to the apparitions of the Virgin Mary.
In the transparency of her heart,
in her humility and courage,
she thwarted all the tricks of the evil one,
What you realized in Bernadette, Lord, is admirable.
We give you thanks.

In these days before our pilgrimage Lord,
Prepare us to receive the grace of the Jubilee.

That we may be ready to receive Your word,
of  which Mary is the echo;

Ready to be reconciled with You
And with our neighbors, close or distant;
Ready to experience this Church event
in fraternal communion, prayer and service.

May Mary guide us to the Grotto of Massabielle,
so that, on our return, we too may say with her
“The Lord has done great things for us”.

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