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The Feast of the Epiphany

The Solemnity of the the Epiphany

This past Sunday, the church celebrated the Solemnity of the Epiphany. Today, January 6, we remember the Feast of the Epiphany, the 12th day of Christmas.

The Gospel on Sunday was from Matthew, Chapter 2, verses 1-12. This is part of that Gospel reading:

 “When they had heard about the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was.  When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage.  Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh….”

The Magi sought the King of the Jews, stopping first in Jerusalem, asking where the newborn king of the Jews could be found. It was upon their departure from their audience with King Herod, that they saw the star that had been preceding them, rise and stop over the place where the child was.

They obviously believed in this Christ child and had faith in the star known as the “Christmas Star”. We hear it called “Star of Wonder, Star of Night”, when we sing “We Three Kings.” One of the teachings I have taken from the celebration of Epiphany is a sense of “wonder”.  And this “new year” more than ever, I am wondering about many things.

I step cautiously into the new year, but am reminded to follow that star. Have you ever gone after a dream or an idea you believed in? Now more than ever, it is worth going after. And as you continue on your journey, what will give you the energy to keep going?  What has been your motivation to keep going? And how will you know if it was worth it?

There are many Christmas and Epiphany traditions which I have experienced from around the world. Some have been brought into my home by my parents and relatives.  Others I have experienced in my travels abroad. For example, in Mexico, when the Three Kings arrive, they come bearing gifts for the children. In the faces of these children can be seen a sense of wonder and expectation. In Mexico, the Epiphany is also known as Little Christmas and celebrated with a beautiful king’s cake.

Sr. Mary Ann spent time in the 9th grade theology classes yesterday, sharing with them stories of how Christmas is celebrated around the world. Maybe you have traditions with which you grew up that can now be shared with your children?

On this Feast of the Epiphany, and in your individual homes,

Let us Pray:
Lord God of heaven and earth,
you revealed your only-begotten Son to every nation by the guidance of a star.
Bless our homes and all those who inhabit them.
Fill us with the light of Christ, that our concern for others may reflect your love. May we be blessed with health, kindness of heart, and gentleness.
Fill us with the light of Christ that our love for each other may go out to all. We ask this and all things through Christ our Lord. Amen.


REFERENCES:

  • https://www.crookston.org/documents/ministriesoffices/worship-a-liturgy/2540-epiphany-tradition-for-the-home-chalking-the-door/file
  • https://catholic-link.org/how-to-bless-your-home-for-the-feast-of-the-epiphany/
  • What Do the Numbers and Letters Mean? The first and last numbers simply refer to the current year. The letters C M B come from the
    traditional names for the three kings: Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar. Some also suggest “Christus Mansionem Benedicat” which means, “May Christ bless this dwelling!”

 

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