St. Anne and St. Joachim are the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the grandparents of Jesus. They spent their lives worshiping God and doing good. For many years after they were married, God did not bless them with children and this made them sad. For years and years, Anne had begged the Lord to give her a child and she promised to consecrate the baby to him.
When she was already old, God answered her prayer in a far better way than she could ever have dreamed. The child born to St. Joachim and St. Anne was the Immaculate Virgin Mary. Mary, the holiest of all women was to become the Mother of God. Anne took tender care of little Mary for a few years. Then she gave her to the service of God, as she had promised she would.
Mary went to live in the holy Temple of Jerusalem. St. Joachim and St. Anne continued their lives of prayer until they died and God called them home to heaven. Christians have always been especially devoted to St. Anne. Many beautiful churches have been built in her honor. Perhaps one of the most famous is the Shrine of St. Anne de Beaupre in Canada. Great crowds go there all year around to ask St. Anne's help in their sufferings.
Today, let us pray especially for the gift of our grandparents as we wish them a happy feast day.