July 26: Sts. Anne and Joachim

We know almost nothing of today’s saints, Anne and Joachim, who were the parents of the Blessed Mother. We really can’t even be sure that those were there true names.
They never are mentioned in the Bible. Surely, Mary did have parents and if a child is a reflection of the parents who raised him/her, then they had to have been outstanding people. Furthermore, Jesus carried their blood in his veins and God would have only chosen the absolute best for the earthly lineage of His Son.
The lore about Anne and Joachim was created and grew over the centuries. It is believed that they must have been respected members of the Jewish community and that they were descendants of the biblical David. Tradition says they were older when Mary was conceived and that only happened after Joaquim spent time in the desert in prayer and fasting. An angel is said to have appeared to them announcing that they would have a daughter who would become famous throughout the world. Three years after her birth, Mary was brought to the temple to be consecrated for special service to the Lord.
Anne and Joachim are the patrons of grandparents and infertile couples. There is a church on the spot where their home was in Jerusalem. Tradition says the relics of St. Anne were brought to France by sainted siblings — Martha, Mary and Lazarus. The reverence to St. Anne was brought to the New World by the French Canadians to the shrine of St. Anne de Beaupré, near Quebec City.
Adapted by A.J. Valentini