In 2019, the January 6th date of the Feast of Epiphany falls on Sunday; in other years the feast is “transferred” to the closest Sunday. Epiphany means a manifestation, an “appearance,” a mind-altering insight into something. The Gospel we read today is from Matthew’s “infancy narrative,” the story of the three Magi searching for a newborn king. The “epiphany” being revealed in this story is that the salvation promises God made to the Jews throughout their history are being offered now to all nations, as represented by the three foreign visitors. For as the second reading today from Ephesians says, the Gentiles are co-heirs … and co-partners in the promise of Christ Jesus…. We are not meant to be in such strife with other nations as we experience today, for we all have the same precious blood sanctified by Jesus Christ. And we are not meant to be divided across religious lines either. The Feast of Epiphany is treasured in the Eastern Christian Church where it is sometimes celebrated as the major Christmas feast or called “little Christmas.” There are wonderful customs associated with Epiphany, such as having one’s house blessed or eating “three kings cake.” (Google it!) On the evening of Epiphany (Twelfth Night — remember the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas”?) it is traditional to take down Christmas decorations. And so we celebrate this feast today across the barriers of nation and religion as an epiphany of our true unity!
– Blog entry by Sister Mary Garascia