Two turtledoves - Catholic Courier

Two turtledoves

During each week of Family Camp this year at Camp Koinonia, the families and teens focused on Tuesday on the theme of "Two Turtledoves." On Monday, for the theme of "A Partridge in a Pear Tree," we were able to thank God for the gift of his only son, the Word made flesh.

On Tuesday, we explored the idea of two turtledoves. The two doves were used to represent for us the two sections that make up the Bible, the Hebrew Scriptures and the Christian Testament.

The Bible, the Word of God, is the written tradition of the church. The Hebrew Scriptures and the New Testament make up our story, our history of faith. They might be old, but they still have meaning for us today.

Just as we often share family stories to help us remember our traditions and our heritage, the Bible, both the Hebrew Scriptures and the New Testament, form the family story of our church.

The Gospel of Luke tells the story of Mary and Joseph presenting the infant Jesus in the temple according to the law of Moses.

Part of the custom also meant presenting either "the sacrifice of ‘a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons,’ in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord" (Luke 2:24).

Actually, according to the law, the primary gift of sacrifice from a new mother should have been a yearling lamb. "If, however, she cannot afford a lamb, she may take two turtledoves" (Leviticus 12:8). Because Mary and Joseph were poor, they couldn’t afford to bring a lamb.

Except they did bring a lamb. They brought with them the Lamb of God and the two turtledoves. In this way, the Hebrew Scripture and the Christian Testament meet. This newborn baby would fulfill the old law and would form a new covenant with us.

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