Augustine Sokolovski

The second day of the Feast of the Presentation in Orthodoxy is dedicated to the celebration of the memory of Simeon. The Presentation is celebrated in the Russian Church on the 15th of February.

The description of the Event of the Candlemas is an exclusive feature of the Gospel of Luke and is not found in other Gospels. The fundamental idea of ​​this particular gospel is the good news that salvation in Christ Jesus is addressed to all nations.

The history of the biblical people before the coming of the Messiah into the world is a history of expectation. In the case of the Presentation, this expectation takes on concrete, astonishing and meaningful characteristics. “Then there was a man in Jerusalem named Simeon. He was a righteous and devout man who longed for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. The Holy Spirit foretold him that he would not see death until he saw Christ the Lord. And he came by inspiration to the temple” (Luke 2:25-27). In these brief words of the Gospel text, everything is said about Simeon. 

Simeon was one of those biblically righteous people who, over the millennia of the history of God’s chosen people, beginning with Abraham, followed the divine call and awaited deliverance without knowing exactly how, when and under what historical circumstances it would come from God. 

The Holy Spirit rested on Simeon and the promise that he would see Christ the Lord was an unmeasurable blessing. And it was not only Simeon who waited for Christ in the temple. Anna the prophetess, a remarkable combination of female biblical holiness and prophetic gift, was also waiting for Christ the Messiah. It is interesting what exactly the Gospel says about her, as about reaching a very advanced age. 

The presentation was this meeting of two righteous people, Simeon and Anna, historical figures who simultaneously embodied righteous men and women throughout Israel's history, with the Lord.

The Presentation as a meeting of the Messiah and righteous Israel. The Presentation as a meeting of God and man. The Presentation as the meeting of the two testaments. The Presentation as the joy of the people of God. The Presentation as the fulfilment of our hope. 

In Him - True God and Genuine Man - God revealed Himself as a Humane, Merciful Father, Savior and Redeemer for the whole world, the Light of Revelation for all people.

„Now you release Your servant, Lord, according to Your word, in peace, for my eyes have seen Your salvation, which You have prepared before the face of all peoples, a light to enlighten the Gentiles and the glory of Your people Israel” (Luke 2: 29-32). These words of the Song of Simeon are the heart of the Event of the Candlemas and the decoration of the Gospel of Luke. Thanks to “Now You Let Go,” Simeon forever became one of its authors. So we can call him an evangelist.