Gospel: Luke 2:25-28a
Sometimes departures are voluntary; sometimes they are forced. So many of God’s people left the Holy Land under duress, carted off to captivity in Babylon. But every empire has its time, and the Persians eventually took their place at the top of the worldly heap. Even far from the Holy Land, God proved faithfulness. God is not bound by place or time, ethnic origin, age, insider or outsider status. God will use whom God will, to be a bearer of good news. In this astonishing case, the people were set in motion, led home to Jerusalem and the Holy Land through the involvement of one foreign emperor, Cyrus, the ruler of Persia, who listened to the stirrings of the spirit.