At that time, the infant Jesus was brought up to Jerusalem by his parents to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every male that opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”) and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.”
Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And inspired by the Spirit he came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the law, he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said, “Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation which thou hast prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to thy people Israel.”
And Joseph and his mother marveled at what was said about him; and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is spoken against (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed.”
And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher; she was of great age, having lived with her husband seven years from her virginity, and as a widow until she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. And coming up that very hour she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of him to all who were looking for the redemption in Jerusalem.
And when they had performed everything according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city, Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the favor of God was upon him.
How old was Jesus when his parents brought Him to Jerusalem? Why did they take Him then?
What kind of man was Simeon? Would you have liked to meet him? Why or why not?
Why did Simeon go to the temple that day? Do you think he was glad that he went? Why or why not?
Do you ever hear Saint Simeon’s prayer in church? Where and when? It is part of the vespers service, and it is also a prayer for all of us to pray when we leave church. If you haven’t already, learn Saint Simeon’s prayer and pray it as you make the sign of the cross whenever you leave church.
What did Simeon say about Jesus to His parents? How do you think they felt after Simeon talked to them? Did his words come true?
Who was Anna? What did she do when she met Jesus?
Where did the family go, after all of this happened? What does the Gospel say happened to Jesus while He was there?