Memorial of Saints Joachim and Anne, parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
(Exodus 20:1-17; Matthew 13:18-23)
Grandparents sometimes kid, “If we knew how much fun it would be to be grandparents, we wouldn’t have bothered having children but have had grandchildren right off.” They are referring to the joy of seeing the wonder of children without all the responsibilities of assuring their growth. But increasingly grandparents take on the duties of child-rearing as their own children give birth outside of marriage. They will find a necessary resource for the task in today’s first reading.
The Ten Commandments, which the first reading dictates, serve as the basis of a truly good life. Parents are wise to teach them to their children as early as possible. More importantly, they have to model them so that children rightly assimilate them as habits.
Today we celebrate Saints Joachim and Anne, the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the grandparents of Jesus. We know them only through what might be called legend. Still we can assume that they were God-loving people who did more than recite the Ten Commandments. They practiced them as well and handed them on to their children and grandchildren.