Punxsutawney Phil, makes his appearance today and we wait to see. Will he see his shadow or not? Or to put the question another way, will it be shadow or light? If he sees his shadow there will be six more weeks of winter. If the light wins out, winter will soon end.
Groundhog day is another of the great "marriages" between the pagan and the Christian. Why is ground hog day February 2? Because it's the Feast of the Presentation or Candlemas Day. It is the day we celebrate announcement by Simeon that Jesus would be "a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel." In honor of that light, it is the day we bless candles, the constant reminders in our tradition that Christ is the light that the darkness cannot overcome.
By now most of us are tired of winter and this year seems to have been as gray as any ever have been here in Richmond. We yearn for the sun. As Christians, however, we know that whatever happens in PA this morning we carry the light of Christ within us. On this Candlemas day, let us be that light to all we encounter.