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Candlemas 2024

Candlemas 2024

Nearly two hundred people braved the cold weather to attend the Mass for the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord Mass (Candlemas) at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Middletown, New York on February 2. Before Mass, Father Roberto Perez, O.Carm. blessed the lit candles of the congregation and intoned a blessing on all in attendance.

Candlemas commemorates the occasion when the Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph, in obedience to Jewish law, went to the Temple in Jerusalem so that Mary could be purified 40 days after the birth of her son, Jesus, and for Mary and Joseph to present Jesus to God as their firstborn. The festival was formerly known as the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary and is now known as the Presentation of the Lord. In recalling the words of Simeon and Anna in the Temple, Jesus is proclaimed on this occasion as, “The Light of the Nations and the glory of His people, Israel.”

Fr. Gerard Tang Choon, O.Carm., Rector of the National Shrine, who was scheduled to celebrate the Mass, suffered a personal loss with the death of his father, George Victor Tang Choon, the night before and had to return home to be with his family. The faithful gathered in the Shrine for Candlemas offered up their prayers for Mr. Tang Choon, Father Gerard, and his family.

News and photos: SEL Media

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