Our Christmas Season continues today with the Feast of the Epiphany. Traditionally, the Feast of the Epiphany was celebrated on January 6th or twelve days after Christmas. It is also known as “Little Christmas.” In the Eastern rite churches, the Epiphany is just as important as Christmas if not more so.
The Feast of the Epiphany celebrates yet another manifestation of Jesus the Son of God. On Christmas we celebrated the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. The Child born in the darkness of night in a lowly manger is today revealed as the Son of God. Jesus is revealed to us as the Light of the World, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, the one in whom God is present.
Traditionally, three events in the life of Christ are remembered today as manifestations of God’s presence and action through Christ: the visit of the Magi, the wedding feast of Cana, and the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River. We now celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany and the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord on separate days of the Christmas Season.
The Gospel describes this Feast as the Magi travelling from the East, following a star and presenting the gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh to the Child Jesus honoring him as God made manifest in our world.
On New Year’s Day, we celebrated the Solemnity of Mary, the mother of God, which is also the World Day of Prayer for Peace. During the Christmas Season, we celebrate Jesus as the Prince of Peace. As we begin a new year marked by new beginnings and resolutions, let us all work together to make manifest Jesus the Son of God by extending his peace and mercy to all we meet.