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January 06, 2007


Well, it's Epiphany today. The day the Wise Men visited the Christ child in Bethlehem, the day they "returned home another way" and the day we mark the fact that their visit marked the fact that Christ came to all men, not just a small subject people in Judea. I was reminded of this yesterday as we drove into Wiesbaden, passing a group of small boys processing behind another youngster holding aloft a large silver star on a pole, his followers included three crowned 'kings', a number of colourfully robed others all with the broadest smiles I have seen on kids faces in quite a while. The Epiphany is, at least in this part of Germany, obviously something the kids mark at their schools and churches, and so I think we should.

Tonight I fly home and tomorrow will be back at my beloved Abbey for the annual Epiphany Carol Service, as usual made splendid by a huge display of lights and candles in all the chapels and the Presbytery. I note with interest that it is seeing a revival in many other Parish Churches as well, again as it should be, since it is, after all, the moment of revelation to the gentiles, of whom we are very definitely a part. The Eastern Church has long seen the Epiphany as being of equal importance to the Nativity, and celebrated it as such. Perhaps it is time that we in the Western Churches rediscovered our Eastern roots and sought a better understanding of the importance of these and other contextual issues which we have lost, or misunderstood.

May you all enjoy a safe and prosperous year ahead, and may we, with the Magi, celebrate properly the wonderful revelation of God's love to the world.

Posted by The Gray Monk at January 6, 2007 10:34 AM

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