Joachim and Anne – how blessed a couple! All creation is indebted to you. For at your hands the Creator was offered a gift excelling all other gifts: a chaste mother, who alone was worthy of him. Joachim and Anne, how blessed and spotless a couple! You will be known by the fruit you have borne, as the Lord says: “By their fruits you will know them.”
The conduct of your life pleased God and was worthy of your daughter. For by the chaste and holy life you led together, you have fashioned a jewel of virginity: she who remained a virgin before, during, and after giving birth. She alone for all time would maintain her virginity in mind and soul as well as in body.
Joachim and Anne, how chaste a couple! While leading a devout and holy life in your human nature, you gave birth to a daughter nobler than the angels, whose queen she now is.
– from a sermon by Bishop Saint John Damascene
St Joachim is recognized as the husband of Saint Anne, the elderly father of the Blessed Virgin Mary, grandfather of Jesus Christ.
Tradition says that while he was away from home, he and Anne each received a message from an angel that Anne was pregnant.
Tradition also tells us that Mary was given to the service of the Temple when she was three years old. One of our stained-glass windows shows St Anne holding the child, Mary.
Joachim is mentioned in neither historical nor canonical writings. The information we have on Joachim derives mainly from the apocryphalProtoevangelium of James.
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen