The Church celebrates the feast of the Presentation of the Lord which occurs forty days after the birth of Jesus. The feast was first observed in the Eastern Church as "The Encounter." In the sixth century, it began to be observed in the West: in Rome with a more penitential character and in Gaul (France) with solemn blessings and processions of candles, popularly known as "Candlemas".
In obedience to the Old Law, the Lord Jesus, the first-born, was presented in the Temple by his Blessed Mother and his foster father. This is another 'epiphany' celebration, as the Christ Child is revealed as the Messiah through the canticle and words of Simeon and the testimony of Anna the prophetess. (Catholicculture.com)
"In his account of the infancy of Jesus St. Luke emphasizes how faithful Mary and Joseph were to the Law of the Lord. They fulfilled with profound devotion all the prescriptions prescribed following the birth of a firstborn male. Two of them were very ancient prescriptions: one concerns the mother and the other the newborn child. The woman was required to abstain from ritual practices for forty days, after which she was to offer a double sacrifice: a lamb as a burnt offering and a turtle-dove as a sin offering; but if she were poor, she could offer a pair of turtle doves or two young pigeons (cf. Lev 12:1-8). St Luke explained that Mary and Joseph offer the sacrifice of the poor (cf. 2:24) in order to emphasize that Jesus was born into a family of simple people, lowly but of steadfast faith: a family that belonged to the poor of Israel who form the true People of God.
" - His Holiness Benedict XVI