Candlemas in Western Christianity Date in the current year: February 2, 2016

Candlemas in Western Christianity The Presentation of Jesus at the Temple, or Candlemas, is one of the major Christian holidays. This holiday celebrates one of the early episodes in life of Jesus Christ.

Mary and Joseph took their baby Jesus to the temple in Jerusalem forty days after his birth. This would complete Mary's ritual purification after childbirth and perform the redemption of the firstborn son. At the temple they met Simeon, who was visited by the Holy Spirit and told not to die before he had seen the Lord's Christ.

The name of the feast “Candlemas” referrers to the tradition of blessing beeswax candles for use throughout the year. Some candles are given to the faithful to use at home. Those candles are lit only during storms and placed in windows to protect the home from the storm.

Every country has its own traditions and beliefs, connected to Candlemas. For instance, according to the belief in the UK, sunny and clear day at Candlemas indicates severe winter weather later. Candlemas in Italy is traditionally considered as the last cold day of winter. The French celebrate Candlemas with crepes. Children in Luxembourg carry lighted sticks and visit neighbors to sing traditional songs in exchange for sweet treats.

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