Candlemas originates from an ancient pagan festival and celebration marking the point that is exactly halfway between the winter and spring equinoxes.
We celebrate it these days on February 2nd, as "Groundhog Day."
As with the majority of our holidays and observances, at some point in the past, the Roman Church determined that it would serve them well to "adopt" and "revise" the many pagan celebrations in order to more easily transition the pagans into practicing Christians.
Today, it is regarded by most as a solemn Christian religious rite marking a particular point in the life of Jesus and his Mother; but for those of us following the old ways, it is a time of fun, celebration, and festivity that the cold and darkness of winter is nearly gone, and the rebirth of Spring is at hand.
Go, Punxsutawney Phil! ;-) (Interestingly, making a convenient "excuse" if "Phil" predicts wrongly, the seeing of his shadow equaling 6 more weeks of winter is exactly the same as the actual time remaining until the Spring (vernal) equinox....so no matter what the outcome on Groundhog day, there are still 6 more weeks of winter....)