The month of February is dedicated to the Holy Family. This year the first 25 days of February fall during the liturgical season known as Ordinary Time which is represented by the liturgical color green. Green, the symbol of hope, is the color of the sprouting seed and arouses in the faithful the hope of reaping the eternal harvest of heaven, especially the hope of a glorious resurrection. The remaining days of February are the beginning of Lent. The liturgical color changes to purple — a symbol of penance, mortification and the sorrow of a contrite heart.
The Holy Father's Intentions for the Month of February 2020Listen to the Migrants’ Cries
We pray that the cries of our migrant brothers and sisters, victims of criminal trafficking, may be heard and considered. (See also Apostleship of Prayer)
Focus of the Liturgy
Highlights of the Month
The month of February is traditionally dedicated to the Holy Family. Between the events which marked Christmas and the beginning of Christ's public life the Church has seen fit to recall the example of the Holy Family for the emulation of the Christian family.
The Feast of the Presentation (February 2) or Candlemas forms a fitting transition from Christmas to Easter. The small Christ-Child is still in His Mother's arms, but already she is offering Him in sacrifice.
The saints that we will focus on this month and try to imitate are St. Blaise (February 3), St. Agatha (February 5), St. Paul Miki & Companions (February 6), St. Jerome Emiliani and St. Josephine Bakhita (February 8), St. Scholastica (February 10), Our Lady of Lourdes (February 11), Sts. Cyril and Methodius (February 14), Seven Founders of the Orders of Servites (February 17), St. Peter Damian (February 21), and the Chair of St. Peter (February 22).
The feast of St. Polycarp (February 23) is superseded by the Sunday liturgy.
This is a time of growth and an opportunity to allow the dignity of Sunday to shine forth prolonging the joy of Easter and Pentecost. Besides those previously mentioned the month's major feasts include:
This month the main liturgical feasts are:
1. Presentation of the Lord, Sunday
2. Blaise; Ansgar, Opt. Mem.
3. Agatha, Memorial
4. Paul Miki and Companions, Memorial
5. Jerome Emiliani; Josephine Bakhita, Opt. Mem.
6. Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday
7. Scholastica, Memorial
8. Our Lady of Lourdes, Opt. Mem.
9. Cyril and Methodius, Memorial
10. Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday
11. Seven Founders of the Orders of Servites, Opt. Mem.
12. Peter Damian, Opt. Mem.
13. Chair of St. Peter, Feast
14. Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sunday
Food for Thought
The Presentation of the Lord in the Temple, A Prophetic Promise Fulfilled
"This man was . . . awaiting the consolation of Israel. "(Luke 2:25)
Who wouldn’t like a bit of consolation today? Who wouldn’t like to feel the Lord put his arm around their shoulders and tell them, “Everything’s going to be okay”?
Simeon was looking for God’s consolation. God had promised restoration for his people, Israel. He had promised a Messiah who would sit on the throne of David and draw all the nations to Jerusalem. For many years, Simeon had prayed for these promises to be fulfilled, but nothing had happened. Israel was still an occupied nation, and her people were still divided between rich and poor, Pharisee and Sadducee, Galilean and Judean. So Simeon continued to pray for redemption. And he waited.
Then the day came. Imagine how tender that moment was when Simeon took the child Jesus into his arms. The “consolation of Israel” had finally arrived (Luke 2:25). You can just hear the emotion welling up in his words: “Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace” (2:29). At last, I have seen him. I can depart now, Lord, because you have come to save my people.
Simeon knew right then and there that everything was going to be okay. He didn’t know how it would happen or when it would happen, but that didn’t matter. He knew that it would happen, and that was enough for him to believe.
God knows your anguish; he hears your prayers; he knows your concerns. So let him console you. Today in the house of the Lord, you will meet Jesus in the unlikely form of bread and wine—as Simeon met him in the unlikely form of an infant. When you receive him, think of this prayerful man. Just as he did, take Jesus into your hands and into your heart. He has come to bring salvation and consolation. He may not tell you how or when, but it doesn’t matter right now. Christ is in you, and everything is going to be okay.
“Master, my eyes have seen your salvation. I surrender myself to you.”