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Visitors from the East

             Ever since December 26th society has been wrapping up Christmas.  Christmas commercials have stopped playing, we stop hearing Christmas carols, people have taken down their Christmas trees and stores are starting to sell merchandise for Valentine’s day. The Church, however, is still thriving in Christmas spirit.  The church is still decorated and the Christmas hymns are still being sung because Christmas is a season- not a day. As we continue throughout this season we continue to experience the excitement and joy we first did on Christmas day.

            Today we celebrate the feast of the Epiphany, the day in which the wise men followed the star and adored the Christ child. The word ‘Epiphany’ translates, from its original Greek to, ‘ to reveal.’ We celebrate today the Christ child being revealed to the world through the wise men.  We celebrate Christs coming for the Jews and for the Gentiles. The Gospel of Matthew has a central theme that Christ came for both Jews and non-Jews and according to Matthew, these non-Jewish wise men were the first to see Jesus.

            Having been sent by Herod, the wise men go out in search for the child. The official title given to King Herod, and all his predecessors was, “King of the Jews.” When he found out that the ‘King of the Jews’ was born he sent out wise men to find this king that may take his throne.  However, the wise men went to Jesus for a totally different purpose. They sought out to adore the new born King.  

            As the wise men began their journey they followed the new, brightly shining star. The star was their guide.   It was the light directing their feet along the journey. At any time there was a great astronomical event, the people of that time would think that something great and spectacular was happening on earth. So when this star came, the wise men followed wanting to see what this grand event was.
            Like the wise men we are challenged to follow the star in our daily lives. We are challenged to look for Christ in our lives in the events in our lives and in other people. Christ is always making himself present to us in our lives; it is our challenge to find him, and adore him when we find him.

            “O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.” This is the refrain from one of my favorite Christmas hymns, ‘O Come All Ye Faithful.”  During Christmas, and all year long, we are called to adore Jesus Christ. Let us remember to always keep Christ at the centre of our lives, always thanking him, and giving him praise. We have a tendency to always ask God for things and never give him praise and adoration. We adore the child in  two inseparable ways: firstly worshiping him for whom he is and secondly, when we become, like the wise men, overwhelmed with joy.

On this feast of the Epiphany, may we continue to hold onto the spirit of Christmas alive in our hearts. May we come to find the Christ child alive in our hearts and alive in our life. May we come, with an open heart diligently searching for the child. When we come to find him, may we kneel down, like the wise men and adore the sweet, tender child and allowing Christ to enter into our lives. 


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