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February 3

St Luke 2, 33 – 35

Something to read

And the child's father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him.  Then Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, "This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be opposed so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed - and a sword will pierce your own soul too."
New Revised Standard Version

Something to think about

Simeon's message to Mary outlines a couple of things:

1. How people respond to Jesus and his message will determine their destiny. Many of Jesus' contemporaries receive his message and are saved, but the religious community, by and large, can't bring themselves to believe that Jesus can be God's Messiah.

2. Through the Holy Spirit, Simeon can see the deep anguish that Mary will feel as her son is rejected by the nation's leaders and ultimately crucified.

No doubt both Joseph and Mary are, as any parents would be, in awe of the blessing being spoken over them and of Jesus. This family was definitely united.

Something to do

Today our understanding of a traditional family is changing. The UK Statistics Authority states the total number of families reached 17.9 million in 2011. This number is made up of married couples, lone mothers and cohabiting couples.

Overseas the numbers are millions more. One way you can help poor families is by supporting a fair taxation system that will benefit the people of developing countries. Christian Aid is leading on this through its Trace the Tax campaign. Take an action here www.christianaid.org.uk

Something to pray

O God, to those who have hunger
give bread,
and to us who have bread
give the hunger for justice.

Today’s contributor is Dionne Gravesande, Christian Aid’s Head of Church Advocacy


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