The Feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, celebrated annually on November 21st, commemorates the presentation of the Blessed Virgin as a child by her parents in the Temple in Jerusalem.
Before Mary's birth, her parents received a heavenly message that they would bear a child. In thanksgiving for the God's gift of Mary's birth, they brought her to the Temple to consecrate their only daughter to The Lord.
The celebration of the Feast is first documented in the 11th century within the Byzantine Catholic Church. It was introduced into the Roman Catholic Church in the 15th century by Pope Gregory XI, then removed from the calendar by Pope Pius V in the mid 16th century. Pope Sixtus V later reestablished the feast in 1585, and it is still celebrated today, commemorating the faith of her parents, Joachim and Anne, and the purity of Mary.
On this Feast of the Presentation of Mary in the Temple by Joachim and Anne, we are invited to make the choice to surrender our lives to the Lord. Parents are reminded of their solemn responsibility to present their children for Baptism. We are all challenged to bring this Feast to life in our age and thereby continue to participate in God's unfolding plan for the whole human race.