And You Are Never The Same

And You Are Never The Same

By Elizabeth Chesley-Jewell

The Feast of the Epiphany celebrates a human encounter with the Divine. It reminds us that once such an encounter has occurred it is impossible to return to the way things were before. The original course of events has been altered forever. The Magi, being from the East, would not have considered the Christ child to be their Messiah. However, they knew that the appearance of this new star in the sky meant the King of the Jews had been born and wanted to pay the new King homage. Once they arrived at the home of the Holy Family we are told, “they were overwhelmed with joy.” They witness the Divine in human form and are transformed and humbled. In the Atrium when we share this story with the children we will sometimes ask, “Do you think the Magi kept what they saw and knew to themselves? Or did they share it with others?” Quite often the children will respond, “They told everyone.” There is nothing more humbling than the knowledge that the one who gave His life for us will always love us. It seems so simple, but it is so difficult as humans to allow ourselves to be overwhelmed by the presence of Christ in our lives. Sometimes there are big moments where the presence of God is everywhere. For myself, the Feast of the Epiphany is also my wedding anniversary. A year today my husband and I vowed to love and honour each other all the days of our lives. Our vows to each other were an encounter with God, where we invite Him into our marriage and lives. And although we exited St. Basil’s that day from the same doors, we did not leave the same way we had come in. Of course, that is a very specific day at a very specific moment in time. The challenge is to keep the Feast of the Epiphany present in the ordinary days. What happens after we receive the gift of Christ’s presence in the Eucharist? We are called to go out into the world, perhaps by another road, and bring Christ to others. Just as the Magi brought their experience of seeing the newborn King to their people. We may take the opportunity to feed the hungry, help a stranger, or listen to the lonely. And, who knows, in that moment you may encounter the Divine all over again. And the joy of the Epiphany continues.

Readings:

  • Isaiah 60.1-6
  • Psalm 72
  • Ephesians 3.2-3a, 5-6
  • Matthew 2.1-12