26th July – Ss Joachim & Anne, Parents of BVM

Today we celebrate our grandparents in Christ – Joachim and Ann. When we were baptisedJoachim Anne into the body of Christ, we could address his Father as Our Father. Particularly in the light of John 19:25-27 we can relate to Mary as our mother too. Thus Jesus grandparents (Mary’s father and mother) become our grandparents as well.

In the Scriptures, Matthew and Luke furnish a family history of Jesus (through Joseph), tracing ancestry to show that Jesus is the culmination of the great promises of the Old Testament. However we know nothing factual about Mary’s ancestry and parents except that they existed. Even the names of Joachim and Ann come from a legendary source [the apocryphal gospel of St James which was not included in the New Testament because of its doubtful authorship] written more than a century after Jesus died.

The heroism and holiness of these people, however, is inferred from the whole family at­mosphere around Mary in the Scriptures. Whether we rely on the legends about Mary’s childhood or make guesses from the information in the Bible, we see in her a fulfilment of many generations of prayerful persons, herself steeped in the religious traditions of her people.

The following is an article from the current Catholic Voice written by Fr Ed Broom. It reflects on Mary’s role in our life as a spiritual mother and co-worker of Jesus in Redemption.