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THE EPIPHANY OF THE LORD

posted 6 Jan 2018, 10:46 by Our Lady of Fatima Church - White City London   [ updated 6 Jan 2018, 10:47 ]

The Wise Men show us the way

Firstly, warmest congratulations to Fr Ephrem and the Eritrean Gheez Rite community who this weekend celebrate Christmas, which comes 2 weeks later in their calendar. Just as they begin their Christmas celebrations so we are coming towards the end of ours – firstly with the feast of the Epiphany this weekend and then on Monday the celebration of the Baptism of the Lord. 

‘Epiphany’ means the revelation of something which had previously been hidden. What had been hidden? So far in our reflections on the wonders of that Bethlehem night we have focused on the humanity of Jesus – the extraordinary truth that the eternal and almighty God could not only become human but that he chose to do so in the most vulnerable of ways, as a baby born into a poor family behind a village pub! As babies do, Jesus gurgled and dribbled, had ten toes, chubby cheeks and soft hair. He was truly human in all ways (except sin). However at the Epiphany we celebrate the divinity of Jesus. The Wise Men emphasize this by kneeling before the baby king with their precious gifts – gold, frankincense and myrrh. Jesus’ birth is like a new star rising in the skies to guide his people on their pilgrimage of life back to the Father. Like the Wise Men we are invited to follow his star and to walk in his light.

There is one more very important aspect to this ‘epiphany’ of Jesus’ divinity. We understand that God became one of us so that we could become one with God, or, we could even say, we ourselves could become like God. If we are united with him then we become one with him. This is what we celebrate in our own baptisms – that God’s own life enters into the very heart of our world and individual lives. This is why every human life is precious and is to be valued and cherished, because as humans we contain within us something of God’s own life. Christmas is coming to an end but we continue to live the message and mission of Christmas when we love and cherish each other, especially, like the baby Jesus, the most vulnerable and powerless members of our society. 

With Christmas blessings from Fr Richard, Fr Ephrem & the parish team.