"We have seen His star in the East
and have come to adore the Lord!"
- Gospel verse for the Epiphany
They saw His star in the East and came to adore Him, Christ the Lord! Something more powerful than their intellect, reasoning, or nature moved them to take the journey to find the newborn King. They, themselves, of royal stature humbled themselves upon finding the Baby Jesus with His mother and Joseph and fell before Him on bended knee. Offering their royal gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, they acknowledged the Kingship of Christ and accepted His manifestation of God to the Gentiles.
The story of the Three Kings --- Balthazar, Gaspar, and Melchior --- is familiar to us and in some ways heartwarming. We retell it with ease and accept its importance in that the divine royalty of Christ was made manifest outside His own Jewish world through the encounter with the Kings. We add the images of the kings to our own creche scenes and probably at our Sunday liturgy join in singing "We Three Kings of Orient Are" or if we attend a Spanish language service "Los Magos Que Vinieron a Belen" (or whatever our language of worship might be a corresponding song). In some cases, we re-enact the story with the arrival of Three Kings at our place of worship. Each of these aspects, as well as many others, help to mark the celebration of the feast for us. But in the midst of it all there are questions presented to us:
What is the significance of the Epiphany in today's world?
What is the meaning of the Epiphany for me in my life?
How do I take the place of the child Jesus to show God to others?
How do I take the place of the Kings to allow God to be revealed to me and through me?
Powerful questions to ponder. Lots of food for thought for tomorrow's liturgy and Eucharistic encounter. Hopefully I'll have a few more insights worth sharing. In the meantime, know that you are welcome to share your reflections on these questions.
Peace, grace, and blessed Epiphany!