Today is the Feast of the Epiphany, and I commend to you both the Epiphany Lessons and Carols and the following Epiphany Dinner tonight at 5:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m., respectively. Details follow below.
The Morning Prayer Invitatory Antiphon for Epiphany is “The Lord has shown forth his glory: Come let us adore him.”
The Gospel lessons for the Sundays of Epiphany all make the Incarnation and its meaning present for us during Epiphany: The Magi, a Dove Descending, the gathering of the disciples, Miracles over Nature as water is turned to wine, an encounter with demons, the Presentation and Simeon’s words, the Transfiguration on the mountaintop, are all proclamations from the heavens, from creation, from spirits, and from God. Moment after moment, appearance after appearance, manifestation after manifestation, proclamation after proclamation announce that the Glorious One is upon the earth.
Epiphany is foundational to the rest of the church year. The lessons are a progression of epiphanies, the signs, of God with us. The given name of Jesus, Jeshua, means “God Saves.” Epiphany culminates with Mark’s description of the Transfiguration, when Jesus appears atop a mountain, his garments radiant white, beside Moses and Elijah, and God proclaims Jesus as his Son, a moment that Gregory of Nazianzus described as one that “initiates us into the mystery of the future.” All these things set the stage for the ministry of Jesus the Teacher, Jesus the Prophet, Jesus the Healer, Jesus the Crucified, and Jesus the Risen. Epiphany indeed creates and opens to us the mystery of the future - what will happen in the life of Jesus, the meaning of the life of Jesus, and the hope for the future of humanity and the hope of our lives.
Picture Attribution: Rubens, Peter Paul, 1577-1640. Adoration of the Magi, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. https://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=56315 [retrieved January 4, 2024]. Original source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Peter_Paul_Rubens_-_L%27adoration_des_Mages.jpg.
Chapel Chats: Your clergy love to hear from you and welcome the opportunity to talk on the Chapel Porch, inside, or come to you for a visit. Please reach out to Fr. CJ to set up a conversation. Rev. Nancy is away until Jan. 27.